LOS ANGELES – Demi Lovato shook off the nerves, grabbed a cup of tea and sang new music while debuting her new YouTube docuseries “Dancing With the Devil” Monday night in Beverly Hills.
“It’s been awhile since I performed,” Lovato confessed, standing on an outdoor stage at the Beverly Hilton in 55-degree weather dressed in a flowing hot pink polka dot top, black pants and heels. “I’m (expletive) cold!”
Performing in biting wind before a drive-in crowd, the 28-year-old proceeded to belt out “Dancing With the Devil,” the title track of her new docuseries which she had “never sang before onstage.” (The first two episodes of the docuseries stream free Tuesday, with new episodes to follow on subsequent Tuesdays.)
The ballad is filled with personal lyrics from her near-fatal drug overdose in 2018. “I was dancing with the devil,” she sang. “Out of control / Almost made it to heaven / It was closer than you know.”
The L.A. debut comes a day after Lovato opened up about finding joy after a rough recovery on “CBS Sunday Morning.”
“I feel so good,” she told CBS’ Tracy Smith ahead of the four-part documentary. “I feel more joy in my life than I’ve ever felt because I’m not quieting or diminishing any part of myself.”
The star shared hope after her struggle to recover from her 2018 overdose. She says doctors told her she had been found maybe “five to 10 minutes” before dying.
“I think that my whole life, I was the horse that everyone was leading to the well, and they couldn’t make me drink the water from the well,” she said on CBS. “It wasn’t until this past year that I was able to taste the freedom of the water in the well, because I finally was ready to drink it.”
She noted: “It’s like I, for the first time in my life, had to essentially die to wake up.”
Lovato, whose new album “Dancing With the Devil … The Art of Starting Over” is out April 2, spoke of feeling out of control in every area of her life.
“I didn’t control any of my life at that period of time,” Lovato said of the time leading up to July 23, 2018, when she nearly died after drunkenly taking oxycodone that she believes was laced with fentanyl. “I’m now in control of my finances, I’m now in control of the food that I eat, how often I work out.”
“Obviously, I was in control of what I put in my mouth,” said the singer, who has been candid about her eating disorder. “But there were times where phones were taken out of – actually, every time I was in a hotel room, my phone was taken out of the room so I couldn’t order room service.”
She says her recovery hinged on her growing up and taking control of her own situation.
“Regardless of what other people may have said or done, my actions put me in the seat that’s in front of you today,” she said. “Unfortunately, nobody can answer for my overdose but me.”
‘Dancing With the Devil’:Demi Lovato reveals she was raped as a teen, is no longer sober in courageous YouTube docuseries
In the documentary, Lovato allows she still consumes alcohol and uses marijuana in moderation. On CBS, she termed it “California sober.”
“I really don’t feel comfortable explaining the parameters of my recovery to people, because I don’t want anyone to look at my parameters of safety and think that’s what works for them, because it might not,” she said in the interview.
“I am cautious to say that, just like I feel the complete abstinent method isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for everybody, I don’t think that this journey of moderation is a one-size-fits-all solution for everybody.”