Stevie Wright in 1999 / Pic: Michael Jones Source: The Daily Telegraph
LEGENDARY rocker Stevie Wright has been admitted to St Vincent's Hospital battling the ravages of a rock career that have left him with manifest health problems that would have killed a lesser man.
The 64-year-old former frontman of The Easybeats confirmed he was admitted to hospital a week ago after being sidelined by a seizure. He is now under observation for liver, kidney, lung and stomach disorders.
"I'm not the best," he said yesterday, in a slurred broken voice only faintly reminiscent of the Leeds dynamo who rock historians regard as Australia's first international pop star.
"It's probably a collection of things that have contributed to it," he said of his present health woes.
"I'm having procedures. I had a cough, so specialists started with my lungs, then my groin was giving me trouble ... They are also looking at an infection in my throat and stomach. And then there are the liver and kidney issues."
Wright, known as Little Stevie, is the singer behind mega 1960s hits Friday On My Mind, I'll Make You Happy, She's So Fine and Sorry, co-written with bandmate George Young before the band busted up in 1969. Yet despite early glory, his name became synonymous with addiction to alcohol and heroin.
Wright yesterday said he had recently undergone surgery to have 2m of intestine removed and had been "sort of put on ice" while doctors assessed him "cos it wasn't very good".
"I thought it was it," he said sluggishly.
Wright proudly states that despite his poor health, he recently celebrated 25 years of sobriety and completed his methadone program "10 or 12 years ago".
It hasn't all plain sailing in recent times, he added.
"I was mucking around with the prescription drugs a bit."
Wright said he expected to spend at least another week in hospital and plans to relocate to the north coast with his partner, Susie, after he is discharged .