In the first three parts of this exclusive interview series with Three Dog Night vocalist Chuck Negron, we discussed why the classic rock group is not in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, why the band ultimately split up, the big hits “One” and “Joy To The World,” when Negron discovered his voice and more. Here, we tackle a more difficult subject: Negron’s long-time battle with heroin addiction. It’s not pretty. We also ask whether he misses his late ex-bandmate, Cory Wells. Following are edited excerpts from a longer phone conversation.
We covered quite a bit in the first two parts of this interview series with Three Dog Night vocalist Chuck Negron, including why the band is not in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, the big hits “One” and “Joy To The World,” what Negron wants his epitaph to be and what classic songs he likes best to perform live. Today, we examine when Negron knew he had a good voice, and why Three Dog Night ultimately split. Following are edited excerpts from a longer phone conversation.
In the first part of this interview series with Three Dog Night singer Chuck Negron, we covered the group’s first big hit, “One.” Here, we discuss the band’s surprising omission from the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, the group’s biggest hit, “Joy To The World,” and what Negron wants his epitaph to be. Interestingly, “Joy” almost never got made. Following are edited excerpts from a longer phone conversation.
Chuck Negron has led quite a life, both the ups and the downs. As a founding member and lead singer with the popular classic rock group Three Dog Night, he helped produce a stunning 21 Billboard Top-40 hits from 1969 to 1975, including “One,” “Eli’s Coming,” “Easy To Be Hard,” “Just An Old-Fashioned Love Song,” and, oh yes let’s not forget, “Joy To The World.” On the lower end, Negron battled heroin addiction for more than a decade, finally kicking the habit in 1991 and detailing it in his honest autobiography, “Three Dog Nightmare.” At 79, Negron still is very much in the music business, having toured as recently as 2019. But the Covid-19 pandemic has pretty much bottled him up since. In fact, Negron recently backed out of this year’s U.S. tour for fear of contracting Covid. We caught up with the rocker recently to discuss all things music, including why he thinks the band is not in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame (we’ll address that in a future installment), what made the tune “Joy To The World” the mega-hit that it was, how he kicked his heroin habit, how he got hooked up with Doors drummer John Densmore’s ex-wife, and much more. Following are edited excerpts from Part 1 of our phone conversation.