Dan Reynolds: Battle with depression inspired my music

Imagine Dragons single Radioactive has turned into one of the most prophetic titles in Billboard chart history. It has since been certified ten times platinum in the USA, making it the best selling rock song of all time and regardless of genre, one of the best selling singles of all time. Radioactive” received two Grammy Awards nominations for Record of the Year and Best Rock Performance, winning the latter.

Their debut studio album Night Visions debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 in the USA, selling more than 83,000 copies within its first week where it has since been certified double Platinum. The album became the fourth best-selling album of 2013 in the US. It was nominated for the Juno Award for International Album of the Year (2014) and won the Billboard Music Award for Top Rock Album (2014).

Their second studio album Smoke + Mirrors debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 in the USA, moving more than 172,000 units, also it debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart and the Canadian Albums Chart. It has since been certified gold in the USA, UK and Brazil.

The band is on top of the world!

But for Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds (28) the view from on top of the world was also troubling. Long prone to bouts of depression, he battled to reconcile the band’s success with his own personal struggles, a situation compounded by having to leave his wife and daughter for long periods on the road.

The last few years have been the highest highs for me and certainly the lowest lows. That’s not to say it’s some sob story because everything has been wonderful and we have had everything happen that we could ever have wanted to happen. But I have certainly dealt with quite a bit of depression and it’s been at its worst and heaviest these last two years.

I was particularly disturbed by the disconnect I was experiencing as the success and fame grew. That’s a scary thing when you get everything that you could have wanted but yet you still feel an emptiness.

I didn’t feel any fear of dying and that scared me. I thought that’s an awful way to live. I have a wonderful daughter and a wife that I love and a great career doing what I love. That made me feel like I needed to re-evaluate my life and find a deeper appreciation for it.

I’ve struggled with depression for years and years. It’s probably the biggest plague of my life but also at times it can be my biggest inspiration. Depression is often what drives artists to express themselves, it certainly is for me at times. I didn’t really have to make
an effort for it to find its way into the music, it’s just part of my life.

Without judging anyone else, I understand exactly why people are reluctant to admit their own struggles. It can be an embarrassing topic for people. Nobody wants to sound weak, as it’s as if you’re asking people to feel bad for you because you’re depressed. I actually think that it’s anything but a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength to be honest. I think it’s really important that people know that others struggle with this.

Written by CelebMix