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By Aaron Small
Simple question: why has this album endured?
Explaining the title of the album, Duff had the following to say. "There was a presence on the song 'Dark Days' in the studio that really let itself be known. I sang the final line and everyone in the studio said, 'that's the f**king title of the record.' The album is a little dark. Some of the subject matter is dark and a lot of the songs are in minor keys. None of the songs are real happy like let's drink a six pack."
In fact, drinking is something Duff hasn't done for seven years now. "I had acute pancreatitis, which is not fun. It was pretty scary. That's what changed everything. That's what drew the line in the sand. When you get out of the hospital, if you drink, you're going to die! That very day, you'll die! That's pretty black and white." So is it easy to maintain sobriety? "Easy is not the word but hard is not the word either. It's just my way of life now. I don't have a choice so it's not easy or hard, that's just the way it is. For me to say, oh, sometimes I really crave a drink, would be copping out."
Besides shedding the bottle, and cigarettes as well, Duff has enrolled in school. "I'm going to Seattle University, majoring in business and finance. I've still got eight quarters 'til I graduate. This quarter, because I went to Japan and we've got some shows, I'm doing my course on-line. They only let you do that for one quarter though. So I've got to figure out what I'm going to do. I might go spring quarter, and then not go summer quarter and tour North America and Europe in the summer. I really, really love school but I really, really love touring so I'll figure it out. You can always go to school, the way I figure it. I'm two years in and it's amazing. It's really killer." Rather ironic that a kid who didn't graduate high school because he started playing in bands, finished his freshman college year with a 4.0 average.
DUFF MCKAGAN Interview Page 3