February 12, 2021
Idol Truth Book published in 2020
Leif Garrett was born in 1961 and “Idol Truth” is the story of his life. I am in the process of reading the book or rather listening to the book on Audible. Leif Garrett is an ideal topic for my blog as this is a 70’s Blog. Being born in 1961 Leif Garrett was more of teenager in the 70’s and that is the time in which he was a Teen Idol. The book is a good snap shot of what was going in show business in the 70s. There was a lot of cocaine that musicians like David Bowie took to help them write songs and record them. Leif Garrett claims that he is broke because money was not set aside in trust for him. All child stars need a fund to help them in case they are unable to work as adults. But it is also possible that taking drugs contributed to his current state of being broke.
I was not into teen idols although was the right age group. I had girlfriends who did collect magazines and posters found in Tiger Beat. The professional reader made it possible for me to enjoy the book. I notice Peter Frampton also has a biography out, but he insisted on reading it himself. Most people should not read their biographies themselves expect for William Shatter who is a professional reader and actor. Leif Garrett also used a professional writer to help him. Leif Garrett is clearly very intelligent and made good decisions with this book. There are so many things I wanted to touch and and reply him in this book that I wanted to write Leif Garrett and email or a letter. But then I thought I would not, because he does not want hear from the public based on the discouragement I encountered on his social media. Stars who want to hear from people make themselves known. William Shatter for example even replied to me on Twitter. The voice of Jim Haas was used instead of Leif Garrett’s voice on the records. Leif Garrett voice was mixed into the background. They did not want him to have voice lessons because they did not think his voice was good enough. Not everyone is cut out to be a singer. Leif Garrett is a good actor and he was able to play the part on stage. He has not gotten enough credit for how hard he worked in the 70s. I image there must be one girl somewhere who saved her heart for him who has a job who could scoop him up and marry him. As I listened to the book I had to remind myself that the voice I was falling in love with was not really Leif’s. I don’t even know if he is dating anyone or what he is up to right now. I know his mother has cancer and I assume he is caring for her.
Updated: I finished the book and unfortunately there was not very much information on his later life. I was interested in his life on heroin. I have read the book Junky many times. I read online that he is in the process of working on another book. Covid means he is not making personal appearances. His website is very minimal with just two links to his Facebook and Twitter which have not been updated since March 2020. I feel that he should not be focusing on music singing in spite of the message that he should in the afterword. I think he could have made a go of the acting.
How did Leif Garrett move from cocaine which was accepted in the 70s to heroin? He fell for the oldest trick in the book. The dealer offered a free sample and in three days he was addicted. Drug Dealers are able to rationalize this behavior. If they did not offer heroin to the clients some other drug dealer would. I have never tried heroin myself because I’m afraid I would like it too much. I could not see starting to take heroin unless I had terminal cancer. I did know some girls who took heroin in the 90’s. Each time they did it to lose weight and each time they quit they gained a rapid amount of weight in a very short time, so naturally they would keep coming back to using from time to time. It’s difficult balance. Being overweight causes type two diabetes. But the heroin did not work for weight loss. If they lost weight as soon as they stopped it would come right away. Meth does not work for weight loss. I knew meth users who became fat. I did know on meth user in the 80’s who became very thin, but he did not want to be thin. In the 80’s the meth was very pure, but now because of the restrictions on the chemicals used to make meth, it is no good for weight loss. In fact the harmful chemicals in meth appear to cause weight gain. This is due to internal organs being poisoned by the meth. The body can no longer process calories correctly. I heard this from a meth user, but I had no idea if he was eating a lot. He did not say that his organs were being poisoned, but he said the more he got into meth the more weight he gained and he attributed his metabolism being ruined by the meth. When you look at a fat person its easy to be cruel and say they are eating too much, but that may not be the case.
When celebrities use cocaine heroin helps them take the edge off. Cocaine is a much greater gateway drug then anyone realizes. Once you start doing cocaine you lose your judgment and by the time you gain it back you are addicted. This links back into Garrett signing a five year contract to be a teen idol. He also points out the lifespan of a teen idol’s career is only five years. By the time his contract was up so was his teen idolhood. I feel everyone should read this book as a cautionary tale. If Leif Garrett had not be distracted by heroin he would have a better time with his career as an actor. If a trust fund had been set up for him giving him a certain amount of money yearly his life could have turned out much better and happier. This is why my heart breaks for him and I wish him all the best.
Trivia: Leif Garrett never met Shaun Cassidy but he did meet Andy Gibb. Andy Gibb died from cocaine abuse. I wonder if anyone ever thought of bringing Leif Garrett and Shaun Cassidy together to discuss their teen idol days?