Beatles Tour Manager Shares Her Recovery Story

A former tour manager for The Beatles and recovering addict will lecture college students this evening at Arizona State University about substance abuse in the entertainment business. Chris O’Dell had a 20-year career in the music business that took off when she worked for the Beatles’ record label in London—she even got to join in the recording for the multi-person chorus of “Hey Jude.” She went on to work with other legends like The Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan. But the rampant drug use in the music industry during that period led her to believe that picking up drugs for the musicians that she worked for was simply “part of the job description.” Today, she’s an addiction counselor in Tucson, and she leverages her personal recovery to help others on their path to sobriety. For O’Dell, it was only becoming a mother that was able to convince her to get clean once and for all. “It was hard at that time to look back and go, ‘This is a problem,’ because if you’re sitting in the back of a limo and everyone is smoking pot and drinking and doing cocaine, what’s the problem?” she says. “We’re off to a show. We’re listening to music every night. How horrible can your life be at that point?”

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