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Friends Dancing with the Stars, partners, and now podcast hosts Backstreet Boys, A.J. McLean and Cheryl Burke bring you pretty messed up.


The show talks about pretty much anything, everything. Love, life, drugs, sex, rock and roll, you name it. Pretty messed up. Doesn't hold back. It's a hot mess with a guidance, mentorship and watchful eye of their friend Rene Elizondo. We get pretty deep and we just talk about everything. Listen to pretty messed up on the radio app or wherever you get your podcasts.


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From the very beginning, listen to nine 021 OMD on the I Heart radio app or wherever you get your podcasts.


All right, hello, everyone, welcome to another episode of our Fair Game podcast, Scientology Fair Game.


Hello. Hi, Lily.


How are you? I'm good, thank you. All right. Today we have a special guest. We do indeed.


Today, we're really happy to to welcome our special guest, Jeff Leverne, who in fact, did the music for our podcast.


And yes, Venus was a Scientologist for more than 40 years and has quite some stories to tell. Hi, Jeff. Welcome.


Hi, Mike. Hi, Leah.


Hi, Jeff. Thanks for doing this and thank you for our wonderful music.


Oh, my pleasure. I wanted you to have something that was yours.


Well, it was really, really gracious of you to do so. Thank you so very much. My pleasure. Yes. All right. So you we like being unique.


Yes, we do. And having our own thing as well.


All right. So, Jeff, why don't you tell us your story. You are a Scientologist, like Mike said for 43 years. You are a dedicated and loyal Scientologist. And. Yeah, why don't you why don't you we're going to let you take it away.


Oh, OK. Um, I'll try to be brief, because it really started in 1963. Yeah. Which is even, you know, earlier. Yeah.


Quickly I was turned on to Scientology and part at the same time.


And those just those two don't really go together, which is interesting. Yeah they do, yeah.


The pot one I think got well at one four for about five years and then in 1968. I was introduced to Scientology again, one of our band members saw a bumper sticker, so they bought a. The they were what the bumper stickers say to find out about Scientology and then a phone number, well, that really worked, OK? It did for me.


I thought I thought, Jeff, I thought you were going to tell me something interesting.


Like it said something that you were like, yes, yes. I'd find out about Scientology.


Get a natural pretty straight out here.


Here's the I don't know what you call it. A caveat. Yeah. Or an addition. OK, when I got turned on to Scientology, they gave me a book. And. Which was not an LRH book, not a not a Hubbard book. Sure, it was written by somebody else. And they taught me how to give an assist and assist is something when you get injured, you you do a certain procedure, right? And I embrace that.


And they told me that I was immortal. And when they told me that and they gave that term. Yeah. Which I never heard of, which was called a Faten, which made an immortal being in Scientology, I embraced that. So that became my new philosophy.


I sat with it for five years and when I found out there was a mission or a center in Santa Clara, I was primed to go there.


Right. Right.


So you so so you so you at this point in your.


You have a band. Yeah. Oh yeah. OK.


And your whole band gets into Scientology.


What was the name of the name of the band was people where you can find us on YouTube. Just put people rock band in and we're all over the place OK. The irony is we were having a hit record. And Scientology came along, right? And in about February 1968, our record was starting to go on the charts, right, and our band had worked very hard for three years to become a really tight performance band. And then we started recording and we signed with Capitol Records.


Wow. So it wasn't anything small, right? Yeah. So you guys were really primed to be to have success with your hard work. But I'm sure Scientology made themselves responsible for the success of your band. We well, I went down to the center, signed up immediately, I was probably the easiest sell you're ever going to find because I was the leader of the band.


I think that that helped push three of the three of the other members of the band, they they went in with me, right? I think they thought. The lecture that they got made sense, and then I was gung ho, and so between that, the four of us signed up for the first course, which is a communications course or something like this.


OK, yeah. Yeah, the communications course to teaching you how to communicate. Right. And I was pretty young, like twenty three.


And I was basically running the band, including finances and, and taking care of everything. And I was a little bit stressed so I thought, OK, this might be the answer to helping me get better at communicating. And so I jumped right into it. Sure. And within probably two weeks, I was a dedicated zealot. It took all of two weeks.


And I am braced for one of the first things they teach you, if you jump right into it and you're doing things in Scientology is about who you can be connected to and who you can't be connected to.


Right. So right away, I thought I was smarter than all the psychiatrists and psychologists in the United States because I learned about.


Emotions and I learned how to spot dangerous people right now, how to to ferret them out right away. And so my first. Encounter with disconnection happened within about a month. Who was that that you had to disconnect from? One of our band members.


And that was always because he I had determined and the people at the mission had helped me determine this, that he was a suppressive person.


In other words, an enemy. An enemy. Yes. Anti-social personality could be very dangerous to me and and to the band. So. I threw any sanity to the wind, any logic to the wind, and we started targeting him. Now we're having the hit record at the same time. And there's no way we could find a replacement for him. It was a very unique singer. And plus, we're going to go on tour with the WHO.


Wow, so an honest and did you tell him that the reason why he was getting kicked out of the band was because of his.


Anti-social because he was telling the truth about Scientology, he never he wasn't he just didn't want to join. Oh, so it wasn't even that he was doing it.


He just didn't want to join and he got kicked out.


Well, he fit all the personality traits of an antisocial person. So for a Scientology person, Scientology. And and he he kind of. In Scientology, they have a term for passive aggressive. And he didn't know what passive aggressive was until recently. Honestly, he was that kind of a person. Extremely talented, though, and so he's he was an integral part of our band, if we kicked him out, we just basically screwed ourselves.


Right. And I didn't care right then. And my brother, who is part of the band, he didn't care either. We both targeted and his name was Larry Norman. Right. And he went on to be a very famous Christian rock songwriter.


OK, I mean, super famous. They call him the godfather of Christian Rock. That's how famous he was. Right. And anyway, so we we we were really brutal.


He didn't want to join and the other lead singer didn't want to join. They were both Christian, right? They never foisted their Christianity on us. Right. However. We started trying to foisted on them, right, and I feel like it's an extreme case of. Being an instant zealot and the extreme that Scientology will go to to stomp on anyone.


Who might prevent me from continuing or. By the way, Jeff, have you reached out to him subsequently? Oh, Larry, yeah, I did.


I'm not going to get into it, but I did an amends in around 19, 1998. I decided to do on the men's meaning to try to make up to him for what you did for him to the other band members.


Yeah, and I. I brought them together for a reunion. And apologized, yeah, to them, I was still in Scientology and it kind of. Dovetails with something I was doing in Scientology, I felt really bad about it. Yeah, and the interesting thing, though, is I never connected. That getting into Scientology basically destroyed my career. So it's a cautionary tale to any any creative people. To me, especially, that if you embrace Scientology and you embrace.


The part of it where they they actually target people that are enemies of Scientology or could prevent you from moving on, right?


Yeah, it's going to mess up your life really quickly. Right. Which it did to me. Yeah, understood. We can all have it probably tell a story about how we've destroyed relationships and, you know, familial, obviously. Cut all fathers off, brothers off, sisters off and careers and did not live up to our potential because, you know, Scientology was saying this group is connected to this and this site company. Meanwhile, some of the biggest whales in Scientology are what's the guy's name like?


Who sells the drugs?


Bob Dugan. Yeah. Yeah. What does he sell?


What is his big money?


Well, he invented a drug that was actually for cancer, a form of cancer, but it was bought by a huge international big pharma conglomerate, which is where he made his money from.


So he effectively got his money, although the vast majority of his billions from Big Pharma. But he doesn't. I know. Taking his money. Exactly.


I mean, but they have made people quit their jobs and do incredible things just because they have a friend of a friend who might work at Eli Lilly. Right, or there's some connection to Big Pharma. Yeah, it's really insane. Anyway, sorry, Jeff, go ahead. No, no, that's OK. Well, along with that. When that happened and I embraced this whole concept that I was a victim to these. Allegedly evil people. Yeah, I also targeted my mother because they question what we were doing, they.


So so I was really on a rampage pretty quickly, I didn't really think about it. I think. In retrospect. I feel that Scientology represented the family, I didn't I didn't have a close family, I didn't personally, my parents were great. They I mean, they they were good, but they didn't we weren't close. Right.


So so I jumped into Scientology and then pretty much everything they said they were.


My mentors. Right. So I just followed through on what Hubbard said, you mean they when you say they, you mean Scientology.




Or in particular the auditors and mission holder, the Scientology mission or center. They they became my new mentors. So when they said. I said I kind of I decided, well, I can't work with Larry Norman anymore in the band because he's going to undermined us.


So and they agreed, they said yes, and they showed me specific things that Hubbard wrote that reaffirmed that and reinforced it. Got it. Yeah, makes sense. I just wanted to move on to sort of the next chapter of your your story here, because I know your story fairly well.


Yes, I know that you're producing a movie about this and our documentary, I should say, about this. And I was interviewed for the documentary.


And you you have some very interesting parts of your story and life that I that I want to make sure we get to touch on, one of which is that you were sort of in on the ground floor of the creation of the celebrity center.


And, you know, this is something that comes up often and we get asked about often and people are curious about this, this sort of odd part of Scientology, which is the focus on celebrities.


And you you and your brother Robbie were there right at the outset of the formation of Celebrity Center. Right.


We was we were actually talking with the head of Celebrity Center before she even founded it.


Because we friends with Yvonne Guillam. Right, and and she was basically the founder of Celebrity Center and we were friends, so we were talking about wouldn't it be great if you could work with more creative people like us?


And this was, I don't know. Months before. The actual orders were given for Yvonne to create a celebrity center, but we were there egging her on and and supporting her in doing that. And and did you use at some point I saw something that said that you joined the Sea Org at that point, were you like an honorary Seahawk people or what?


No, I think we have the distinction of being the only rock band to join as a group. We joined the whole group, joined the Sea Org under under Yvonne at Celebrity Center, and we did our training are not a nautical training. They had ships. At San Pedro and we all trained on those ships. And then our our orders were to go out and continue performing and then get names. For people who might be interested in Scientology after the gigs.


Oh, so you so you guys became a rock band slash moment, so, yeah, not yeah.


Recruitment or proselytizing, getting getting new names for Scientology. And when we first got into it, man, we were.


We were proselytizing to anybody and everybody. And I would be on the plane with some other. Rock person, you know, because we're going to the same place and I'd tell them about Scientology and did you get anybody in? Not any not any celebrities, not any major rock people, but others. Did you make a Scientologist? Did you make.


Oh, we we boomed we to the mission. Wow. And are those people still there? Do you know the people that you got in? Are they still dedicated?


And most of them or most of them are out now or dead? Well, I mean. So I think now. I know I just lost a friend who was still in, and I was really sad about that, of course.


Of course.


It's really it was hard on me because he was a brilliant guy and he actually helped. I got him in and then he helped Hubbard to update and restore all of Hubbard's recordings. Hmm. So. I still keep feeling that I've got some karma to make up for the amount of things I did to directly or indirectly help Scientology.


Well, yeah, yeah, we all we all feel that way. And that's why we're doing what we're doing. That's why you're doing what you're doing. Right.


I mean. Well, both of you have been inspirational to me to keep going. You know, in terms of. It was tough getting out for me. Of course, it's. Look, like you said, these people were became your parents, they became your best friend, they became your family.


And if you if you do any work in the field of of trauma based work and therapies, I mean, this is what they talk about. The you usually you have a lot of love for your abusers and your it creates a bond there. That's not easy to break. And although they were hurtful to you and you hurt others because you were hurt, there's still a bond there.


Right? There's trauma created, but there's also a bond created through that trauma.


And it is hard to to step away from and it is hard to recover from. Well, yeah, in my particular case, it was really severe, but that's later I mean, that's later in the story.


Well, what are we so you become a dedicated Scientologist, like Mike said, for over 40 years. Forty three. Right.


You are a dedicated and loyal Scientologist, helping Scientology to you are recruiting, as we all were. But it sounds like you are more successful than I was. I clearly didn't set a good example to make any real Scientologists. All your effort at Mike. Neither were you.


I never got I never got a single person in my entire life. Failures. We are failures in Scientology.


Well, I do have to say this is an interesting and interesting point is we started in 1968, carrying into 1969.


I was adamant that I wanted to do the higher levels of Scientology.


Right. So I went clear in 1968. And the interesting thing is I did that and then I did levels that go above that.


That get into some serious science fiction, but you guys have probably talked about yeah, I'm sure.


But anyway, the end result of that was. I fell into a deep depression after doing the big what they call O3. And it never really got sorted out, right, well, did they keep trying to tell you it'll get better with the next shot level? Yes. And it'll all your questions will be asked. Yeah, exactly right.


Well, that's exactly what what I thought. Right. And. And I never connected it with what I was doing right, because I trusted them and so for me, up until I had my huge kind of breakdown and that was years later. I thought. That it was the next thing over the hill, it was always just one more rise, right? You're going to make it right?


Right. Well, that's the carrot that Mike talks about. You know, that and that we've all had that you know what we were like. Maybe it'll get better. I mean, I was when I did 03, I was like, this is insane.


And, you know, my my supervisor told me, you don't need to believe it like it. You're just look at the meter. The meter doesn't lie and you don't need to believe it.


So that that kind of keeps some of us in, like, OK, good, because if I have to believe this, I mean, I'll keep doing it, but I don't have to believe that maybe it'll get crazy later, you know what I mean? You're to find out. There's no you know, and and basically what we're talking about is and I forget if it's only three or I don't know where you learn about, you know, your body is made up of of body things and other other beings and your thoughts are not your own.


And, you know, you no longer exist as a as a spiritual being. But my point is, is that you're creating literally a person who is creating another universe for themselves. And it's it's creates psychosis. I mean, it is I'm not a therapist, but to tell people that your own thoughts are not your thoughts and it is the other beings thoughts and you're talking to entities. And then when you get to 025, you're taught, you're pretending you're, you know, talking to a being that is being cancer.


That's being this. That's being that.


And, you know, you believe that you are curing yourself once you free this being. And they had the realization that they're not any of those things. And then they go off and you blow these entities.


You know, it's just absolutely insane. But you want to believe it, right?


You go out. You happen to do. Yes. Let me just say that I I started doing what I did 083 in 1969, which starts the route to becoming a major victim. Or you're a victim of all these little entities.


Snicket's you know, if you if you had a big board and you were put putting stick it up a little. Yeah it's like that. Yeah I believed it. One hundred percent sure.


And not everybody I know did. I did. Right. And from that point on it was just a constant. I was being victimized one way or another by these and yeah I guess and I think it, it, it does tend to breed victims because you're always the effect of something in this particular case, as you you get deeper and deeper into Scientology, you become more of a victim because there's more and more of them to deal with.


And then it becomes mind boggling. It's as if I had my board wide board and I was putting stickers, stickers on it. Right. And but you're not talking like twenty thirty. You're talking ten thousand. Right? Right.


I'm trying to give a visual sense of just how crazy it is. Right. But we stayed in it and you stayed in it for 40 years, and so what was the what was the beginning of the end that allowed you to start looking and start to see the truth?


Because I'm sure it was a series of things I'm not I'm sure it wasn't one thing people ask us that all the time, you know, it's never the one thing. Right?


Well, in this particular case. It was and this was in 2008. It was a series of unusual events. But the first first one, I think, was getting thrown in jail. I somehow met because I was feeling more and more guilty about not being a good Scientologist.


I actually started believing that. I was somehow. A little bit criminal for I was, you know, just not a good Scientologist and I was starting to beat myself up, OK, and then I just somehow.


Manipulated everything, because I believe that we do tend to create our own situations. I got arrested at the airport for trying to smuggle. A dagger onto the plane. Oh, why are you doing that?


I was and I was it what it was, was I was somewhat of at that time a proper survivalist, OK?


And I had a plastic hairbrush that had a removable handle, and it was sharp at the end. OK. And so I wasn't thinking about it.


And it was plastic and I didn't think I didn't think it would show up on the X-rays, you know, when they because I had a bag and I threw it in a bag, I was going to Vegas for the NEA, the National Association of Broadcasters.


And so I was jumping on like on the plane. And I was rushing because I was really late and I didn't pay attention. And it showed up on the X-ray. And the next thing you know, I stuck my foot in my mouth and said everything I could be wrong.


And the next thing I know, I'm handcuffed and the Burbank police are taking me to jail. OK, then what happened? Well, I got out and. And I had a great lawyer and. I got away with community service. But by that time, I was believing that I had really let down Scientology. Because I'd gotten arrested, that's like a huge, huge PR problem if anybody found out I had actually been arrested and maybe even branded, you know, quasi terrorist.


And so I had to go in and do into what ethics they're kind of. Well, you could find a better and see somebody about the things I had done that were bad. And. And it just seemed like it got worse and worse in terms of I really started to feel depressed. And they weren't bringing me out of it. In other words, Scientology wasn't helping, right? And so by the end of 1968, I had had a really bad.


Experience with mediation through another arm of an eight, you mean Jeff, I'm sorry, what did I say?


You said 68. Yeah, sorry. Yeah.


In 2008, I had been trying to sort out a business situation that was really almost criminal or another person had taken me for a great deal of money. Yeah. And then the Scientology. I heard they call it World Institute of Scientology Enterprises, which is the secular business section of Scientology. Uh huh. They had found against me, right. And they had also in doing that, they had violated much of what Hubbard had written about how you deal with disagreements and business disagreements.


So I couldn't I couldn't wrap my head around that, but they were actually violating what Hubbard was saying and so that a really bad divorce. And.


I just fell in the end of 68, I was oh, and then they had pushed me to become another status, donations, more money to for just for money. Right. And I and I had gone to flag the Florida Mecca of Scientology to get help. And they ended up I ended up seeing somebody who was going to help me and instead of helping me. The two of them teamed up on me to try to get money out of me, and they got ten thousand dollars that I didn't have.


So I donated on my credit card and then they kicked me off the base. They kicked me out of there. They said, we can't help you. Right?


Right. And so I'm coming home now at ten thousand dollars more in debt, right? And and your church can't help it.


And they said, no, we can't help you. You have to go home. They can help you in L.A. but we can't do anything for you.


Right. So how did this go on for this, this? You know, you you described it yourself as you were in a major depression. Yes. Like, how long did it go on for him? What brought you out of it in the end?


What it went on for my depression went on for three solid years, no, let alone. And every day I wanted to commit suicide. Wow. Now, I was Scientology in L.A. was trying to help me. They were bringing me in to give give their therapy. But their therapy was what you were talking about, Leah. Yeah, it was to find more the being who was depressed and suicidal.


Well, but they they were going to find these beings that were stuck to me that were causing sort of saying that that's OK.


Yes. Yeah, that's what it is. You find the other being. That's not you. That's feeling these things. Yes, that's really the cause of this. It's not you just that's the press.


It's this other being that is making you believe that you're depressed. So we need to support it. We need to find that entity. It's literally like just to give everybody a visual home. It's literally, look, you have to sit there and go. You have to like, think, where is this being the spiritual being in my body? And you have to talk to it. You literally have to talk to it, locate it. Where is it?


What might be in my head, because I'm thinking it in my head. So maybe it's him. Is it outside your head making you think that you are thinking that and that's the therapy of Scientology guys. That and by the way, this is not free. So they tell you that you have entities that your body is composed of, that your thoughts are composed of, and they they are the only people on the planet who can get rid of these entities, cause hundreds of thousands of dollars to get there.


And if you are depressed, like Jeff is saying, if you are sick, your body's sick part, they will then locate the entity that's sick or causing your body to be sick.


And once that's found proof, you should know depression. No. Yes. No more should get better lung cancer, no more. Whatever the ailment is.


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Friends, Dancing with the Stars, partners and now podcast hosts Backstreet Boys, A.J. McLean and Cheryl Burke bring you pretty messed up.


The show talks about pretty much anything, everything. Love, life, drugs, sex, rock and roll, you name it. Pretty messed up. Doesn't hold back. It's a hot mess with the guidance, mentorship and watchful eye of their friend Rene Elizondo. We get pretty deep and we just talk about everything. Listen to pretty messed up on the radio app or wherever you get your podcasts.


Let me just add to this place. Go ahead and Jeff, the the fact that you do not get better. Is always your fault, right? It is always that you have failed to discover the real cause of your situation depression, illness, whatever, because you're not trying hard enough or you haven't persisted enough or you haven't done the right. The thing the way that L. Ron Hubbard says must be done or you haven't paid enough money or like there's always a reason and it's you you have failed to properly apply Scientology.


And that's why this has not yet resolved. So just give us some more money and we will do some more Scientology on you and then it will resolve. And this is what happens. And this is a microcosm of one situation of someone who is depressed. But there is, you know, many other people who have been in similar circumstances or have a different problem or issue that they are trying to address. And the same thing always applies. It's you have to do more Scientology.


And the only reason that you haven't yet solved the problem and gotten better is you haven't yet done enough Scientology or you're doing the Scientology wrong. So you need to keep going until you do it right.


Let me interject one point, because that when I was in Florida and they kicked me out, they gave me a program because. I thought I was doing things, you know, at the time I was desperate to get money and, you know, you you you fudge on your taxes or you do something a little bit unethical with somebody else business wise. So I had a whole list of things I had to do, but it was all things that could jeopardize them, right?


Things that would cause a problem for them. Right. And and so I was feeling like exactly like what Mike said.


I was like I was starting to feel like, well, I hit depression because I felt like I was a useless piece of shit. Right. If I can say that word, I because I'll say it again is a piece of doodoo.


And that was that was really the crux of the depression. And I would go in to get therapy or to get what they call the auditing.


Yeah. And to try to locate this stuff. And by the time by the middle of 2009. Yeah. 2009. After getting more of that, I said, I can't do this anymore because what was happening and I was getting more and more depressed and literally insane, right.


And so I had to stop that, and at that point, they they were scared. They were right, and that's my opinion, that they were scared because I never said once. I feel like I need to commit suicide. I never told them that because I knew once I said that once I was out of there. Right. That's how I felt. So I never said it. But I know they saw that I was it could be dangerous.


I could harm myself.


And you would think that as a church running around saying that they're the leaders of mental health, that they would want to help people who were here at this place that you are in your life, but they don't know how to deal with it because they create this and people would create it and they don't know how to deal with what they've created.


No, they in my opinion, they were extremely helpful in driving me crazy. Sure. And at that point, the only thing I could get was just. They had they were trying to make me eat because at that point, by the end of 2008, I'd lost 40 pounds. At least, right, and I looked like a skeleton, right? And so they were seeing the issues that might come up and because I was well known in Scientology, because I performed hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of hours of musical performances for their events, most people know who I am.


Right. And I felt like, OK, if I knock myself off, this isn't going to look good for them at all.


Well, they would have made up they would have made up something that would have been acceptable. Truth, right. That wasn't that wasn't such ruse. But just to protect themselves and their PR. Well, exactly.


But they did put a little effort into trying to keep me alive and having you well know, by having what they call volunteer ministers. Look after me, uh, check in on me every day. Right. And so that that went on for three years and I wasn't getting any better. And then. Finally, I didn't care, I didn't give a shit about it any more, I didn't care about myself, I didn't care what they thought, I finally was at a point where because I understand most of the time I was depressed.


I was so concerned about how it would look at Scientology. Yeah, that was my biggest concern ever. And for me to cause I'm a bad public relations situation for them was horrible. I was like, oh my God, I can't do this. So but I was just. Haunted by the thought of suicide every day.


So what happened is when I got to the very highest close to the bottom, as you could get without actually doing it. Yeah, I didn't I didn't care. And then one day, because I was also agoraphobic and bedridden, I couldn't drive anymore. I couldn't do anything. But I could watch the news on the Internet. And one day something came up a good thing for Scientology, I could tell you that, well, I think I honestly think it was an article about you.


And I had known you not know well, but we'd seen each other, said hello and had Celebrity Center and the article was by this journalist, Tony Ortega.


And because I knew about Mike Rynders blog by that time, yeah, but I would never go on to because he was a he wasn't.


Yes, well, he is a suppressive person. Jeff he still is.


Oh, I know. Proudly. That's why I want to try to help. I'm one of bonafied asshole. Yes, it's been confirmed. Well, I confirmed it to me because I've been I've been I've been talking to him. Good. And you get it, then you get it. Yes, I do. But anyway, so I read this article.


I knew it was forbidden. Yeah.


And I actually told one of my caregivers who was a Scientologist that I had looked at this article from this journalist. There was Mike Rinder, because if it had been Mike Rinder, they probably would have wrestled me to the floor and raised me and put me in a straitjacket. But it was Tony Ortega, the journalist who's who's written countless articles on Scientology, and it made sense. That's the problem. Right. And so I started following him and after about two months.


And this was the end of 2011.


Yeah. I woke up one day and the depression was gone. Wow, I mean, I'm saying it was a sunny day. I woke up, looked at the sun coming in through the window. And I was grateful for the probably for the first time in my life, because grateful is not a word in Scientology. No, neither is depression. No, neither is depression. Yeah, yeah.


I actually thought I. I'm grateful. Oh, my God, I'm alive. And that was it. From that point on, I knew I was out, but I still believed in Hubbard. Right. But I didn't believe in the leader, David Miscavige or the organization anymore. And then shortly after that, I started following Mike. And when I did that, it was like, oh, my God, this I can't believe all this stuff that I'm learning that I should have seen.




And so I was getting educated really fast. And then I started.


This is kind of a funny story. You can cut it out or not.


But I like funny stories. Well, you can cut that.


I said that out, too. Yeah. This is this is this is where I knew I was on the right path, because even when I was out, I still question is that why I'm getting better?


Even when I was out, I was questioning, is it really that is Scientology anyway, this made me understand that that I had Guardian Angels and that there was something there helping me. I was I started going, what can I do? To help Tony, to help Mike, because I felt Mike was helping me a lot and putting himself on the line and I knew that fair game crap that they were doing to him. And anyway and I thought, well, I'm still under the radar.


I'm going into the celebrity center actually doing a course. I have all the inside stuff. They're sending me all of the emails I started sending Mike. Stuff from an unknown source and an anonymous and Mike started posting it because it was very current because was well, I was cautious. But not that careful, and I sent him something that had my email attached to it. Yeah, and at the time. This was two thousand and twelve, I think the end of 12.


Oh, I see Mike didn't know it was being sent from you. I thought you were saying you were sending know who I was.


I got it. OK, got it. Got it. Got it.


OK, but he believed he believed me because the stuff I was sending him was. Yeah. You know, current and. Yeah. And I would give my comments about it.


So you screwed up and sent them your email. Well it was embedded in the post I got.


So when I found out at that time they were putting out Scientology was putting out fake emails for events that weren't actually happening, then they would then they would track who they sent it.


This is how this how devious they were.


Right. Ah and ah yes. I'm sorry. Are this how devious they are. Yes.


But wish we could talk in past tense about Scientology being devious but not yet to.


Yeah. Yeah. Well I wish we could do yes. But anyway so, so they got me right and I get this, I get this call from my ethics officer who is the guy who handled me.


He's a lead ethics officer at the Advanced Org in Los Angeles.


So this is a person who recommends that everybody who doesn't know what an ethics officer is, it's a Sea Org member, an employee of Scientology who basically reprimands parishioners, hands out the the punishment. Go ahead. From the Punisher. From Daddy. Yeah, Daddy.


Yeah, I had a pretty we had a pretty good rapport when I was in Scientology.


Was it Julie Schwartz?


Yes, it was Julian Schwartz. It's so funny how many of us you know, what's so funny about Julian's words? Any person you talked to who was actually really a producing Scientologist in Scientology, every single one has as their punisher, Julian Schwartz, as I did, as my mom did, as all my family did, as anybody who we've talked to Mike did. Julian Schwartz was their ethics officer in Los Angeles. Julian was my guy.


And of course, I don't know if he ever described Julian is like six two or six three, probably two hundred and ten pounds. And he's not fat.


Yeah. You know, he's just he's he's big and very gentle.


Young. Er, you'll go ahead Mike. So is that how you would describe him? I have no idea. I don't think I've ever laid eyes on him. Julian Schwartz. Yeah I know.


I know, I know Louis and Gretchen but I don't know him.


Do you know I'm old school. You know Fred Schwartz, right, Fred. I mean. Yeah, Fred. Red, I I knew Gretchen from the old old days, so, you know, that family I've known. But anyway, so he calls me.


Yeah. And leaves a message and said, Jeff, I need you to come in right away, doesn't say what it is. And I went, Oh, shit, excuse me.


And people are going to drink. That's a good thing.


And so I went, OK, what does he want? What does he want? I had no idea. Oh, so, you know, the email was embedded into later. No, I didn't know exactly what it was, but I figured, oops, because I was sending Mike under the radar, you know, inside information, I was sending Tony inside information anyway. So I get there and he said it'll be really quick. Yeah, that was the thing on the message.


It'll be very fast. Yeah. So I go in there and this is the building I went into was not the small building that he usually was in. It was that big blue building.


Right. One that's so I had to be buzzed in. Yeah. And then they took me down into the bowels. This is kind of Kafkaesque. If you know Franz Kafka and his stories, they take me to the bowels of the building. It gets darker.


There's no windows and they put me in a little room. Yeah. I still don't know what's going on. Yeah. And Julian finally comes in. He hands me a piece of paper and he says, did you send this to one of the squirrels? He called you a squirrel, Mike. You didn't call your suppressive. He called you a squirrel, a squirrel website. So so anyway, it's a squirrel and, you know, Cinespia squirrel Mike.


Yeah, pretty much OK, because a squirrel is referred to as somebody who's doing Scientology outside of the Scientology organization and also in an unauthorized in unorthodox manner.


Well, listen, you're not allowed to practice Scientology, everybody. Unless Scientology is being paid right, anybody who's decides to apply any Scientology to another outside of Scientology being paid, you are labeled a squirrel and you could be expelled for practicing your, quote, unquote, religion without paying Scientology money. Go ahead, Mike. Sorry. Go ahead, John. Yeah.


So anyway, I look at it and. Here, I don't know why this happened. Yeah, I blanked out. And this is where this is where I believe that sometimes someone is watching over you, right? I looked at it and I didn't recognize it, even though I'd probably and I'd sent it two months earlier, it took them two months to track me down. Right. I'd send it two months earlier. Forgotten that I had sent it to Mike.


Yeah. And I and I said, OK, I probably did send it, but I don't remember it. Right. So I really had to think.


Oh, by the way, just an aside, really quick.


Hubbard and his policy taught me how to lie. And from that point on, I got really good at it. Yeah, because Scientologists are anything they're they're amazing liars, yeah. Oh, they're incredible, they're incredible.


Well, I heard a lecture he did and he recommended practice lying. That's all we're doing is Scientologist is lying. I mean, that's all we're doing through our Scientology career and I'm not making a joke.


You are.


I want to tell an acceptable truth. Truth? You don't tell people what Scientology really is when people say, can you be a Christian and a sign that you're taught to say yes when you know that's not true. Do Scientologists believe in God? Yes, they do. There's eight dynamics. You're taught to lie every single day of your life.


Well, yes, but I got that. Then when Hubbard told me to practice it, I got better.


Awesome. OK, go ahead.


OK, so here's a case where it backfires on them. All right.


I went, oh, my God, somebody hacked me. I didn't say that.


And this is a time when hackers really exi anthologist were hacking Scientologists. Right. Right, right. So the timing was right. Right. Anyway, yeah. So I said a bunch of things and I acted really upset. Sure. I you know, and so he said, well do you mind if we bring one of our security checkers in with an E meter.


And what am I going to say? I mean, you mean to interrogate you on The Science Show and tell the interrogator with their electronic device the OK.


And you said what? Wow. What am I going to say? I didn't. I didn't.


I was in the CNN meeting that you did? Yeah, of course. No, I just said, yeah, go ahead. Yeah. So at that point, I sat down and she did a lot of questions. Have you ever gone to a website of an enemy of Scientology? Have you ever said anything?


Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah? Yeah.


And it was you know, when it didn't it was like 15 minutes, maybe 20 minutes or so. And at the time I was chilled out completely. I was just like, I can I can lie to the meter. That was my view. I'm not upset. There's nothing upsetting me. Right. And there wasn't at that point. And so. She left. Another 10 minutes waiting to get on on their emitter. What did they catch you on their lie detector?


No. OK, I heard, and that's when I knew is bullshit, right?


Because because you're taught like we all are, that the meter does not lie in Scientology. Exactly.


Until you realize that it's all lies. Right. So anyway.


So. I wasn't done. Let me see if I can, so he said, OK, I just like he was kind of saying, I believe you.


Yes. One more thing, though. He said, I would like it if you would go on to your email page, log in and I want to see any emails you've sent out.


Oh, my God. And I'm going, oh, shit, yeah, again, you do, right? So what am I going to do? Say no? Right. So they had some computers for public and I sat down at one. I logged in and we went into it. And first we were going by emails and I was I was scanning the emails to try to find the exact email that I sent to Mike. In the meantime, he was watching and there is an email to Tony Ortega.


There's an email to somebody else. And I'm going, boy, I better go fast. Anyway, he didn't see that.


We found we found the email, so it was sent from my account. We went into my account. And here's where I believe in. I started to believe in guardian angels. Yeah.


Two days before. I had sent that email, my password had been changed. And this verified and I didn't and I honestly did not remember changing the password, so I said, yeah, someone hacked me, right. And he said, well, you better fix that with AOL and change your password, and I said, damn straight I'm going to. And anyway, the long and short of it, he saw that.


Yeah, he saw my reaction, which was very genuine. Yeah. And he said, OK, well. We had to check you, right, and he said. Your cool. So what happened after that, two and a half, two and a half hours later? Yeah, I get out of that basement and he believed me and I was clean, right.


And I went, oh, my God, something some somebody was watching out for me, it's all I can say, right?


One thing I wanted to interject here, because I'm not sure like we know this, but I don't think our listeners do. Yeah. Part of the reason or the main reason why you continued to cooperate with these people was because of your children.


Oh, yeah. This is we haven't even mentioned that. Like, it's sort of odd that you're going along with these people and not just telling them to go take a hike. And the reason was because your two children were in Scientology and you knew that they would disconnect from you if Julian Schwartz suddenly said, oh, your dad's a bad guy. Kaboom!


Well, I officially really left in my mind Scientology at the end of 2011, I didn't officially do anything public to show that I was out until 2017. Wow. And that in Mike's nailed it.


Yeah, there were two reasons why I felt I had to be under the radar.




One was absolutely my family and all my friends we're talking about.


I'm friends with so many artists and Scientology artists and work with them and you name them and I probably know them and the celebrities and stuff I lose that I would lose, but for sure I'd lose my kids. And they were at the time. Under age, and I did not have custody of them, right, and so and my ex wife is a hardcore Scientologist. So she's hardcore and she's in the business. She's a casting director, right, and she's still a Scientologist, hard core, too, to the bone.


Yeah, so and so I had that to deal with.


And physically, I was recovering. It was a slow process. Three years of of literally starving myself. Right. Um, so. And then your family and your family at this point, you know, like your ex-wife and all of your Scientology friends everywhere, they concerned about you, they just assume Scientology was taking care of your know.


Well, they were all concerned because I basically I did I did a kind of a. Special disconnection or I disconnected from everybody when I was depressed, right? And I just disappeared from being a, you know, pretty visible in Scientology, I was gone. Right. And I and nobody would tell the truth about what happened to me.


Right. Right. It was only a feeling. Julian Schwartz was telling everybody he's depressed. We caused this depression and he's suicidal and we caused this and. Yeah, yeah. So they're not going to say that and, you know, no, they're not going to do it.


So no, people just didn't know to some degree they just.


But even if they did, they would be like Scientology's handling it. I mean.


Yeah, exactly. Yeah, exactly. And they they thought they were when I got better, my caregivers.


Who I think actually did a really amazing job of of trying to deal with somebody that seriously mentally disturbed, right. They were delighted. And and then I started reconnecting. And then I discovered the first under the radar person when I got out. And that really bolstered me because I didn't have anybody to talk to who was a Scientologist who actually was in good standing but under the radar, and who was that?


I can't say. Oh, no worries, OK, because no, it's OK with me.


I just I just assumed you were out and talking. No, no, not yet.


Oh, OK. All right. I think that's going to happen soon, but it hasn't happened yet. But anyway. But Mike is the big thing was my kids. Yes, of course. And what happened is as I started to get stronger and I also did something I don't think I don't know anybody who's done this, I wanted to prove to myself where the control mechanisms in the Scientology study or where the technology of Scientology, they call it, where did Hubbard build control mechanisms?


And one of the biggest areas is his defining antisocial personalities as suppressive and that they are extremely dangerous.


Right. So I actually was on the course that teaches you about that before I had my breakdown. Right. I went in and finished it while I was under the radar.


Oh, well, uh, just because I wanted to see what are they teaching currently and is it what I think they're teaching? And it was and I believe that one of the most. Heinous crimes Hubbard did was to give people the concept that there are suppressive people that you have to disconnect from. Well, and the main and the main the main characteristics of it, USPI, is that they are speaking out against Scientology abuses. It's not it's not set in that way.


Of course, it's that the poor, the light, they don't want you to do well and they don't they don't support activities that we're doing that are good. They secretly are happy when you fail. And these are all people who are telling the truth about Scientology always.


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Anyway, I did the course I graduated. Yeah, I actually graduated, and that was part of keeping me under the radar because I could say to other Scientologists, Oh, I'm on I'm on this big course.


Right. And then I finished that and then I did a few other little courses to keep the facade going. Yeah. And then finally I just kind of quietly put my focus on restoring my career as a composer and a songwriter and music producer.


And I still did an event or two where I performed while I was under the radar to keep that facade. So and so then what happened?


What happened that allowed you to walk away and be public? And then I want to know about your children and what happened.


Well, what happened is both kids got back, got really into Scientology. Their mom was working hard to get them to do more Scientology. And I tried to say something once. Yeah. And that was to my son when he was actually on a course on big course.


And how old is your son and daughter at this point?


At this point, my son's twenty six and my daughter is 23. OK, and but then they were younger. But she was she was successfully.


Getting them to do more and right at that point now we're talking twenty seventeen. Yeah. And and I saw. I'm not going to change this and I can't stand by and not say something publicly, it's I'm I feel secure enough. I feel strong enough and I want to publicly reconnect with my brother. I had privately reconnected with my brother, who I had disconnected from in 1984 because he left Scientology well.


So my brother and I had not talked really. We didn't start talking to till 2012.


Wow. I mean, we had and I mean, there's more to the story where I actually went to one of the things when I did my breakdown. Yeah.


Going back to that time, what exacerbated my condition is I had seen my brother, who we had done a reunion and received a..


A Rock Rock and Roll Hall of Fame award. And we all had to come into San Jose, including my brother. Yeah. So in order for him to even be able to be there, he had to pretend that he was going to get back into Scientology. That's how much he wanted to see me.


Oh, wow.


And he gave them he spent money.


He he was talking with the their top justice person, Mike. What's his name. Ellis'. Mike Ellis. He was talking with him and he was acting like he was going to come back in. The only did it so he could do that event.


And the reason why we're not going fully into your story is because you are making a documentary about your story.


I just saw that it was a story that's a little different than anything else that anybody has done and and also the fact that I so completely gave myself to that organization. For when you add it up, you know, it's certainly over over four decades, right. And and and I felt like I can't stand by. I'm more of an activist when I got into Scientology that killed that part of me.


Right. But that's what you saw entirely. Exactly. Yeah.


You're right that they didn't kill it. They just put it to sleep. Exactly. Well, we have our band we wrote a song because I'm also releasing an album with the band in the band. Right? Yeah.


So we're just we're just about done with it. And one of the songs that is called Time, Time to Wake the Monkey, and it's really about experiments. We're done with monkeys where the brain would go to sleep and then they could they could put a little stimulus there and they the brain would wake up right until the sun the sun is coming out. What is your album coming out?


So you guys are reunited and then reunited. We're where it should be done. It should come out in about two or three months.


Awesome. And where can people get it? Well, we're for sure, you know, you'll be able to get it on Spotify or iTunes. And I'm looking at a marketing program because we're we're retro contemporary. We really our lead singer who came a little bit later, sang with Creedence Clearwater for 22 years. He was our lead singer. Right. So it gives you gives you an idea of what kind of singing we have. That's something we're rock.


And what about your documentary? I mean, because I'm sure people want to hear about your story of of of reconnecting. Well, the documentary were as usual and the director quit normal things and the producers had to take over.


And we're we're working on re editing it and trying.


And the real story is about what Scientology did to my brother and I, my family, my band, and more than that, how we were able to overcome it, which is amazing because the story doesn't end with the destruction.


No, it ends with the rebirth.


Exactly. And that says a lot about all of you. Right. I mean, like Mike said, these things are not dead. And you they were just put to sleep for a short time.


Well, I'm hoping it inspires anyone who is who is in any cult, big or small. Yeah. To go, you know, I'm 75 years old. I feel better than I did when I was 40, when I was in Scientology. And I feel like I've got a lot ahead to still do. And this story, I feel it just helps.


I want to support the way I support what you are doing and what others are doing so we can see this thing exposed enough where it just is no longer effective and it's shrinking to a point of disappearing.


Yes. And we want to support you and what you're doing. Well, thank you. Thank you. We're with you, Jeff. Well, thanks. Yes. Yeah.


Well, I'm so excited that I got to talk to both of you. Just like I said, you're both. Instrumental and helping me carry on to keep going. So what ended up happening, your you tried to talk to your son and daughter. They weren't having it. Your ex-wife, Lisa London, is pushing Scientology heavily on your kids.


So what and what happened is in 19 in 2017. I did an interview with my brother and we did an interview with a host in a very on a very small cable channel in Aspen at.


And but it was so small that I knew it probably wouldn't reach anybody.


OK, so I was still under the radar and I had just done this this clearly anti Scientology interview.


And so at that point, though, I was also doing the band and I told my son and my daughter I am doing my band and my brother, who is a declared suppressive person, is going to be part of it. At that point, the real issue was for my son. He was starting to get some of the auditing, the therapy and Scientology, and they they really grill you.


They grilled my son. So he had to tell the truth and say, well, my dad is his going to work with his brother and his brother is declared.


Could you imagine this being a sin in this so-called religion? Literally, my dad is talking to his brother.


My uncle like this is considered a sin. He thinks he's confessing something that's so awful.


Well, at that point, yeah, you know what they did, they said, well, we can't do anything for you, you can't get your therapy. Until you sort it out right now. So now he has to be involved.


Well, yeah, he had to be involved and he he he texted me and said, Dad, they want you to come in to Celebrity Center. And they want you to talk to the ethics officer. It's celebrity center, and he said she is going to call you and I said, fine, have her call me, no problem.




So a week goes by, I get no phone calls. Right. And I'm expecting to do it. And I'm prepped to to talk to her. Right. Yeah. And then a week later he texted me, said, Dad, you were supposed to, you know, pick up the phone call when she called you and I said, Colin. She never called me, right? She lied to him. She said she called several times. Right.


There's no way to fake that if you call somebody's phone. It shows up on your phone. Right. So, anyway, I said have her call me at the beginning of the week. So she finally calls me, right?


And we had a 13 minute conversation and I said, who are you talking to? Her name is Sarah. She's a lead ethics officer at Celebrity Center. OK, she's the top celebrity center. She probably ethics person, 14 years old. Go ahead.


Yeah, she said she's No. Twenty eight. Twenty five, something like that.


Anyway, she said I need you to come in. And to talk to me. And at this point, they still weren't certain about my allegiances yet because they didn't have all the information, even though I had done an interview, it wasn't really public. Right. And and I I said something that they don't know how to deal with, would you say? I said I said no.


They don't know how to deal with no right. So but I did say I said I will meet you anywhere you like.


Yeah, but I will not come in. To Celebrity Center, right, and she said, no, I can't do that.


And so we went around for about five minutes, we just went around and around and finally she was getting really upset and she said and starting to yell.


And she said. If you don't come in. I am going to declare you right now. So a process that normally takes months to do, she's going to do it in the next hour or two if I don't come in. Right. So I kind of pulled back because I was I was getting a little bit heated myself, and I just calmed down and said. OK, let me think about it, I will let you know. After Thursday.


After Thursday at 2:00, you understand, I've been a staff member for those who don't know, Thursday at 2:00 is when the week ends for a staff in an organization and they start the new week, but they have to get their production as high as they can by two o'clock before two o'clock. So I said after Thursday, right.


And at that point, I wrote something up about the way I was treated and I still was, am I under the radar? And I used their own Hubbard's own policies to make her look stupid.


Right. And I sent that. To everyone, including David Miscavige, right, so after that, it was pretty clear shortly after that, I released our Indiegogo fund crowdfunding for the band and the title of the Indiegogo was. Rock group survives Scientology, and that was it at that point, I thought, and then what happened with your children? They just.


Well, my son had already disconnected from me. He'd already disconnected, even though that had not come out yet. Because he knew because I made it clear I'm not I am not doing Scientology anymore.


You can do what you want, but I'm not right. And he still and believe that he would have to disconnect from me within two within two weeks of the conversation I had with him and everything else, he severed his tie. He didn't say, I'm disconnecting. You just stopped communicating.


Right? So that my daughter was different, she took longer.


Yeah, the next year, twenty eighteen, she's now wanting to do Scientology and they told her she has to call me up and tell me never to call, text, email, Instagram, Facebook her ever again. Wow. And she took. So and she and I said, did somebody tell you to do this? Did somebody give you what you need to tell me? And then because I think there was somebody coaching her during the phone call while she was talking to me.


And I. She was gone and that was it. So you haven't spoken to your children? I've texted them, I wish them happy Hanukkah, happy birthday. And no response, and this is, again, the work of Scientology destroying relationships for decades, and they want in you to do this? Well, you know, this was the one that gave me a choice, really, because they always give you a choice. Disconnect from your brother again, right?


And then you can keep your children and get back in Scientology or you're going to lose all your friends, which I did, and your children.


Is that a choice, though? Just. Yeah, it's kind of like you can easily. Yeah, it's a Sophie's Choice. Exactly.


And this is a church. This is a church who is running around charging people hundreds of thousands of dollars, destroying people's lives, destroying people's relationships, destroying families, calling itself a church.


Well, my view of it, as I call it, an organization masquerading as a church. And that's that's how I have profiting and profiting as a business.


Yes, well, I know. And I think that the reason that. You and Mike have been at it so long and that people like me want to do their part to expose it, is it's so rooted in in both money and the First Amendment. That they were abused 100 percent, that. Pulling out those routes is just like having a mile high tree and the roots just have spread so far and we're making progress. Oh hell yeah.


Listen, no one would have ever thought that we would have left. And we did. And the many before us. Right. And yeah, there's not many people running to Scientology who were not born into Scientology.


And I still have hope that your family will be connected, your children will come back to you and Mike's children will come back to him. And I mean, I never thought it would happen with certain people. It has happened with certain people. And I just think we're all doing our part. We all contribute to each other's parts and we got to continue to support each other in this way.


I yeah, for me, I just have the attitude. I was never going to leave Scientology. Right. And if some someone who is such a strong, strong believer. Yeah. Can can come out of it now. I had to suffer. Some serious stuff to get out of it. Yes, I did get out of it, though, and I'm better for it and I'm really happy I've been stable since I've been out of it. And I feel that they it's like, you know, the Yellow Submarine, the cartoon.


Mm hmm.


When they finally overcame the blue meanies, the color came back. And everyone and to me, I always think of that that Beatles cartoon, because they did come back and people were released. So I have I feel that everything we're doing, there's going to be a time when we can rejoice and reconnect.


Yes. Jeff, I'm so proud of you and I'm so happy for you, I'm so happy that you've reconnected with your brother, your band, this documentary, when I hope you let us know when it's coming out. Oh, for sure.


Thank you for all that you're doing. And I'm so happy that you're on your way to being you and you're finding joy and happiness in your life. And God bless you always.


Well, back at you, both of you. Thank you. All right. Next time. Yes, well, I'll keep you or I'll keep you both posted. And please do not we're just not ready with the editing yet to really show it.


But I would understand of Amaurosis as soon as it believe me, I love to give feedback so good. You go ahead and send it to us and I'd be happy to get the pages of notes. Perfect.


No, I want it. I'm not like the director.


OK, now you said thank you again, Jeff, and thanks so much as Blessings and thank you for listening and we'll talk to you next time. I'm like, bye bye Jeff. Thank you again.


Friends Dancing with the Stars, partners, and now podcast hosts Backstreet Boys, A.J. McLean and Cheryl Burke bring you pretty messed up. The show talks about pretty much anything, everything. Love, life, drugs, sex, rock and roll, you name it. Pretty messed up. Doesn't hold back. It's a hot mess with the guidance, mentorship and watchful eye of their friend Rene Elizondo. We get pretty deep and we just talk about everything. Listen to pretty messed up on the radio app or wherever you get your podcasts.


Hey, everyone, it's Michelle Williams, and I love being able to share my story with you on my podcast, checking in with Michelle Williams were my guests and I we get real as we share the ups and downs of our mental health journeys.


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