In My Blood

Album: Shawn Mendes (2018)
Charted: 10 11


  • The lead single from Shawn Mendes' third studio album is a heartbreaking and vulnerable rock ballad about overcoming obstacles.

    Someone help me
    I'm crawling in my skin
    Sometimes I feel like giving up
    But I just can't
    It isn't in my blood

    Shawn is feeling burned out but refuses to give up and fade away because it's not in his blood. He said: "This is the closest song to my heart I've ever written."
  • Shawn penned the song with regular collaborators:

    Canadian Geoff Warburton, who is the brother of one of Shawn's best friends, Ian. Warburton contributed to the writing of nine Illuminate cuts, including the song "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back."

    American songwriter and producer Scott Harris who contributed to the writing of ten Illuminate cuts including the singles "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" and "Treat You Better". Harris also co-penned The Chainsmokers' hit tune "Don't Let Me Down."

    New York singer-songwriter Teddy Geiger, who co-wrote "Stitches" from Shawn's debut album Handwritten and "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back," "Mercy" and "Treat You Better" from his sophomore set Illuminate. Geiger also produced "In My Blood" along with Mendes.
  • The lyrics are about Mendes' personal experiences with anxiety. "It was kind of something that hit me last year," he confessed to Beats 1's Zane Lowe in a March 2018 interview. "Growing up, I was a pretty calm kid. I knew people who suffered from anxiety, found it kind of hard to understand, and then when it hits you, you're like, 'Oh my god, this is crazy.'"

    Shawn reassured fans that he is doing well. "When I play that song, I go 'Just so you know I'm okay,'" he said. "The best thing about it is that it's not all down. The whole reason I wrote the song was to be like, at the very end, 'It's not in my blood to do that.'"
  • "In My Blood" sees a much more vulnerable, raw side of Mendes. "I'm really proud of it," he told Billboard. "I think, especially, comparing that to all of my other music – I love all of my other songs, but…it was all kind of more vague topics about a relationship, and this is my first time breaking into something that's more serious and more about me."

    "The concept of this song is about how it feels [when] you're about to give up, and then you don't," Mendes continued. "That's the whole payoff in the chorus section…It's about something that I think everybody goes through and it's something that I think people don't talk about often, especially in music."
  • This was the first tune Shawn Mendes wrote during his studio sessions for his third album. "We walked in the first day and we wrote 'In My Blood,'" he told Zane Lowe, explaining that he was aiming for a more explosive, stadium rock sound. "When we walked in, I was like, I want to make a Kings of Leon record. I want to go more rock."
  • Warburton explained to Billboard why the songwriters chose depression as a subject matter:

    "We wanted to write a song that wasn't necessarily about love," he said. "It's about struggle… Not succumbing to it, but overcoming. So we kind of went in there with that mindset. This is one where people are saying that they really needed to hear those lyrics, that it really speaks to them. So it's been a real privilege."
  • The singer's businessman father, Manuel Mendes, is a Portuguese immigrant, from the Algarve town of Lagos. Shawn released a revamped version of "In My Blood" featuring lyrics in Portuguese as the official song for Portugal's 2018 World Cup team. It was the first time he had honored his cultural heritage by singing in Portuguese.
  • The single-shot music video was directed by frequent Mendes collaborator Jay Martin. It features the singer lying on the floor barefoot while his surroundings begin to change. "I was like, let's do the one-take video for this because this song is so personal, so emotional, and so internal," Martin told MTV News. "It seemed like this was the time to go for that."

    As Mendes is singing, it begins to snow and rain. "The rain literally dumped on us," director Jay Martin recalled. "I was worried he was gonna be squinting or panicked as it began. But he was good. He's a pro."
  • Shawn Mendes said at Billboard's Live Music Summit in November 2018 that he wrote this after taking inspiration from a Kings of Leon concert. The Canadian singer explained that he said to himself during the gig, "This is what music is. This is live, drums, people are clapping, It's this big chant, this big anthem.'"

    Mendes added that the song is his favorite to perform live. "We do this thing at the end where we get the whole crowd singing the big anthem chant, and it's just unbeatable," he said. "I've decided: I'm not gonna beat that feeling."
  • Mendes performed this as a duet with Miley Cyrus at the Grammy Awards in 2019.
  • Shawn Mendes won Single of the Year for this song at the 2019 Juno Awards. The Canadian star also scooped gongs for Artist of the Year and Songwriter of the Year plus Album of the Year and Pop Album of the Year for his self-titled record.


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

John Lee HookerSongwriter Interviews

Into the vaults for Bruce Pollock's 1984 conversation with the esteemed bluesman. Hooker talks about transforming a Tony Bennett classic and why you don't have to be sad and lonely to write the blues.

Boz ScaggsSongwriter Interviews

The "Lowdown" and "Lido Shuffle" singer makes a habit of playing with the best in the business.

Grunge Bands QuizMusic Quiz

If the name Citizen Dick means anything to you, there's a chance you'll get some of these right.

The Real Nick DrakeSong Writing

The head of Drake's estate shares his insights on the late folk singer's life and music.

They Might Be GiantsSongwriter Interviews

Who writes a song about a name they found in a phone book? That's just one of the everyday things these guys find to sing about. Anything in their field of vision or general scope of knowledge is fair game. If you cross paths with them, so are you.

Kerry Livgren of KansasSongwriter Interviews

In this talk from the '80s, the Kansas frontman talks turning to God and writing "Dust In The Wind."