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Episode notes

Guitarist and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee with Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Ricky Byrd, shares stories from his incredible rock career and how he became a Recovery Troubadour using music to inspire people struggling with addiction.


On this episode, Ricky talks to Matt about:

  • How he got into rock music and his very first performance
  • Growing up in NYC and the clubs he frequented in 70s
  • His struggles with substance use and how 1 drink could lead to a night full of hard drugs and mistakes
  • The near-death experience that scared him into recovery
  • Joining different support groups and the importance of community for recovering addicts
  • Playing benefit shows and discovering how his music could help and inspire people
  • Becoming a Recovery Troubadour and substance abuse counselor
  • Recording the recovery albums Clean Getaway and Sobering Times to spread recovery messages
  • And More

To learn more about Ricky and his projects, visit

This episode is sponsored by The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Centers – one of the oldest residential drug and alcohol rehab programs. ARC is a non-profit and was hit hard financially as a result of COVID. For more information, and to donate or sign up for their quarterly newsletter, visit


About Ricky Byrd

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member, guitarist /singer- songwriter Ricky Byrd (inducted in 2015 with Joan Jett and The Blackhearts), has had a career in music  spanning over 40 years. Byrd has recorded and played with Roger Daltrey, and toured with Ian Hunter and Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes respectively. He has also been blessed to have had the chance to, at one time or another, share the stage with music royalty including Paul McCartney, Ringo, Alice Cooper, Bruce Springsteen, Steven Van Zandt, Joe Walsh, Mavis Staples, Dion, Brian Wilson, Smokey Robinson, Jimmy Page, Graham Nash, and Elvis Costello…to name just a few.


Ricky Byrd is now a Recovery Troubadour and Keynote Speaker using music, lyrics and his experience, strength, and hope to inspire change to those struggling with addiction. Byrd is first and foremost - a man living in long-term recovery. With over 30 years of sobriety, Byrd has channeled his experiences to assist those struggling with drug and alcohol addiction.  Earning his CASAC T (Certified Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counselor) credentials and CARC (Certified Addiction Recovery Coach) credentials, Byrd leads recovery music groups at detox and treatment centers, as well as serving as keynote speaker at various events nationally. Additionally, Byrd has organized / participated in concert events, music outreach sessions, and prevention programs.

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