Here are the facts of the story that I was trying to tell about the song, "Angel" as told by Spence D.
"Run DMC was the first rap group to go platinum. They were the first rap group to sell out a successful arena tour. They were the first rap group to bridge the gap between the decidedly white medium of rock n' roll and the decidedly more urban medium of rap. And they undoubtedly revived the career of a flailing Aerosmith back in 1986 when they reworked their seminal classic "Walk This Way" as a blistering rap/rock crossover. Yet amidst all the success lies the inevitable heart of darkness.
While working on his forthcoming solo album, Checks, Thugs And Rock N' Roll, DMC learned that he had been adopted as a child. Perhaps not a huge revelation, but still nonetheless an eye-opening discovering, especially for a man well into his thirties. The buck doesn't stop there, however. We're all familiar with the de rigueur rock n' roll cliches of drug abuse, sexual escapades and groupie hi-jinx, band in-fighting…tucked in amongst these is the dark specter of suicide.
And hard to believe as it may be, Darryl McDaniels, 1/3 of what many consider to be the greatest rap group ever to grip a set of microphones, command a pair of turntables, and grace the stage, once considered killing himself. Surprisingly enough, it was the intervention of a Canadian chanteuse that saved his life. This is his story…as told to Spence D. Of further note is the fact that DMC's knowledge of his adoption and the classic Harry Chapin song, "Cat In The Cradle" play an important role in the events that unfolded over the course of the past decade."I've been on this earth for 35 years and 10 years ago I'm sittin' there and I'm like 'Yo, am I here just to be DMC?'
First to go Gold, first to go Platinum, did all of this. Grew up in Hollis, Queens, I went to the best Catholic schools all my life, Catholic elementary, Catholic high school, I went to St. Johns University. Okay, it was Christmas for me everyday growing up as a kid. I was spoiled. Best life a kid could have. Now I become DMC with Joey, who was just Joey, but now we're Run DMC and we go on to spearhead the whole hip-hop movement and we go on to fortune and fame. So I'm sittin' over in Europe 10 years ago and sayin' 'Somethin' ain't right here. Somethin' is missin'.' But I couldn't put my finger on it. So I said to myself--not that I wasn't happy with the way things were goin' and I wasn't grateful for all of my accomplishments, but I said 'Okay, I'm gonna commit suicide.' Why? Probably because I was unhappy with 'if this is all I'm gonna get out of this life, I can't stay here. I'm ready to move on to my next plane of existence. There's gotta be more to this. People were like 'D, you're crazy! You're f-----' DMC. You've got a wife, kids, life is beautiful.' I said, 'All of that is lovely, but there's something else that is missing.'"This was in '97 and I said 'When I get home from Europe…' I was in Europe and Run DMC, without havin' a hit record or video, we're over in Europe getting' a hundred grand a night. Life can't be better than that s---. I don't give a f--- if somebody knows nuthin' about my music, we're the f-----' Rolling Stones, we're the f-----' Beatles of hip-hop. A lotta rappers, after they sell their 21 million two years from now you ain't gonna care about these muthaf-----. It don't get no better than that. Me, Run, and Jay, we were able to tour until we were 85. People would still comes see us doin' "It's Like That" [as old men]. But I said 'When I get home, I'm gonna commit suicide.' So I get home and I get in the car that picks me up [at the airport], I turned the radio on. Sarah McLachlan's "Angel" was on the radio. That recordsaved my life. Wife. Kids. Fortune. Fame. I didn't give a f--- about none of that.
I turned the radio on--and I'm tryin' to express to you how it's so funny. I turned it on and I heard Sarah McLachlan's record and something that day said 'Life is good. It's good to be alive.' "So I go and I buy that record and everything Sarah McLachlan ever made. I listen Sarah McLachlan for one whole year. At the end of the year the Grammy's come around and my manager says 'D, let's go to the Grammy party. We're gonna go to Clive Davis' party.' I didn't want to go. I didn't care about s---. All I cared about was Sarah McLachlan records. So we go to the Grammy party, I get there and who do I see sittin' across the room--'cuz she was on Arista Records under Clive Davis--it's Sarah McLachlan. She was 'that lady.' I go 'Oh my god, it's that lady!' So I'm gettin' all nervous, but then I go 'No, I gotta go over there and tell Sarah McLachlan what her record did for me.'
So I pushed through the red carpet and the paparazzi, I get over to Sarah McLachlan, she looks up and she sees DMC standin' there in his full Run DMC regalia, hat, dressed in black, Adidas on. She says 'Run DMC, I love you guys. I love what you guys represent. Your music is so cool. I'm a big fan.' I'm like 'Wow!' Then I go, 'Ms. McLachlan, thank you for tellin' me that but I was suicidal, I didn't know what life was about, I had a lot to live for, but I was upset and was gonna kill myself. I don't know if I would've really done it, but just having suicidal thoughts. Then I heard your record "Angel." Now the record's name is "Angel," you sound like an angel, people say you're an angel, but you're not an angel to me, you're a god.' And I'm goin' on and on and on and she's lookin' at me like 'Oh-kaaaaay. So I finish and she looks at me and she says this to me: 'Thank you for telling me that Darryl, 'cause that's what music is supposed to do.' She shakes my hand and she walks away."