In a new investigative report from Billboard, Chris Brown‘s “downward spiral” is detailed by insiders and former employees. Brown, who recently announced the 33-date Party tour, is described at one point in the report as “basically the new Bobby Brown.” Others expressed their fears surrounding Brown’s alleged tendency toward self-medication.
The report opens with a former employee’s account of a “Monday morning around this time in 2016,” recalling Brown’s annoyance at a delivery man at the door while he scrolled Instagram to check for updates on Karrueche Tran, a noted model and Brown’s ex. At the time, members of Brown’s team told Billboard in the report published Thursday, he would sometimes stay awake for as many as three days in a row while snorting coke and “dabbling in” Xanax, molly, and lean.
“He will cuss you out and say, ‘Hey, man, I’m functioning. I’m going to get the work out.’ And he does,” a “current member” of Brown’s team said. “But [he’s not] the first functional star who thinks they can handle those powerful drugs. I got to say with all my heart, he’s dancing with death.”
Brown was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder in 2014, a probation officer’s report cited by Billboard revealed. The report also said Brown had engaged in “inappropriate self-medicating,” adding that he also suffered from “untreated PTSD.” For one former employee of Brown’s, a woman, Brown’s behavior doesn’t mean he “hates” women. “He’s actually a very sweet, sensitive guy,” the former employee told Billboard. “But they’re an easy target, and he’s a bully. It’s not just women—it’s everyone, and he can get away with it.”
RCA Records and others point to Brown’s talent, which is often overshadowed by unsettling headlines such as last month’s report that Karrueche Tran had been given a restraining order against him after alleged threats. “He’s a natural,” Flii Stylz, Brown’s choreographer, told Billboard. “He is almost God’s perfect person. No matter how he fucks up and no matter what he does, another replacement for him is not on the way in the next decade.”
Read Billboard‘s full investigative report, which also touches on his 2009 felony assault of Rihanna and his recently canceled boxing match with Soulja Boy, right here.