The Life and Times (Of a Man Called Depression)

Songfacts®:

  • The Specials singer Terry Hall was diagnosed as bipolar following a suicide attempt in 2004. During this lounge-pop tune peppered with nervy brass, Hall delivers a soul-baring monologue about mental illness. The song was recorded in the aptly disengaging time signature of 5/4.
  • Hall told Uncut magazine in 2019 that writing and recording this song was very therapeutic. "I got really ill around 10 years ago, to a level where I could barely walk and speak it affected my brain so badly," he said. "I'd been recognized as suffering from a mild version of manic depression since I was about 13, at a time in the early 1970s when doctors would give you Valium, which you can get very easily addicted to. It was why I was so reluctant to try medication, but I'm now on meds and they work well."

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Gary Lewis

Gary LewisSongwriter Interviews

Gary Lewis and the Playboys had seven Top 10 hits despite competition from The Beatles. Gary talks about the hits, his famous father, and getting drafted.

Lajon Witherspoon of Sevendust

Lajon Witherspoon of SevendustSongwriter Interviews

The Sevendust frontman talks about the group's songwriting process, and how trips to the Murder Bar helped forge their latest album.

Taylor Dayne

Taylor DayneSongwriter Interviews

Taylor talks about "The Machine" - the hits, the videos and Clive Davis.

Adele

AdeleFact or Fiction

Despite her reticent personality, Adele's life and music are filled with intrigue. See if you can spot the true tales.

Motley Crue

Motley CrueFact or Fiction

Was Dr. Feelgood a dentist? Did the "Crüecifixion" really happen?

Terry Jacks ("Seasons in the Sun")

Terry Jacks ("Seasons in the Sun")Songwriter Interviews

Inspired by his dear friend, "Seasons in the Sun" paid for Terry's boat, which led him away from music and into a battle with Canadian paper mills.