Richie Sambora

Richie Sambora

Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora has debuted a new song in the hopes of helping those addicted to drugs.

The 54-year-old musician has written the track, 'Lighthouse,' which he played at an event raising awareness about heroin and painkiller abuse in New Jersey, and proceeds from its sale will go towards a drug treatment facility which is planned for the region.

According to the Associated Press, Richie, who has battled drug addiction himself, had originally named the song 'Needles on the Shore', but decided to change it because he wanted to do something "optimistic" which would be a "beacon of light and hope" for people battling addiction.

He said: "Everyone needs that light when they're far off the shore." The song's lyrics include: "Those who matter don't judge/ When you're swimming with the tide in the wake of a flood."

During the gig, Richie spoke about his own past drug abuse after spending time in rehab and said: "I got first-hand experience. I never did heroin, but obviously I did other stuff."

The guitarist and father-of-one, who insists he is now drug-free, wanted to take part in the event because he admits he is "scared" about what his 16-year-old daughter Ava, with ex-wife Heather Locklear, could end up being involved in when she gets older.

He said: "We can't be scared silent. Together we can make a difference because this epidemic has to stop."

Meanwhile, Richie is taking a break from Bon Jovi, having cited "personal issues" in April 2013, and he insisted that drugs played no part in his decision to spend some time apart from the group.

He claims the band took on too much work and he plans to rejoin the band, although he has not decided when he will play with them again.

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