David Nail Gets Real About Depression With ‘In My Head’ [Exclusive Premiere]
David Nail has been open about his ongoing battle with depression, and he put his struggle into his new song, "In My Head," premiering exclusively on Taste of Country.
"In My Head" is the second song Nail has released from his forthcoming album, Only This and Nothing More, with his new band David Nail & the Well Ravens. Nail wrote the introspective song with bandmates Jason Hall and Andrew Petroff in the early stages of their band. Nail recalls telling Petroff to play two chords on guitar as he tried to write the lyrics to what would become "In My Head."
"It was very fluid and it flowed out rather effortlessly," the "Red Light" hitmaker tells Taste of Country. "I feel like any time a song happens like that, it's something that's probably been weighing on you. I've touched on this subject matter a few times in other songs, but I had never really been as detailed as I was in this particular song. I don't know that I've ever heard a song that explains what it feels like and what you deal with on a day-to-day basis from that point of view."
Nail says he wasn't afraid to be so honest in the song. His familiar vocals lead the track along, backed by sweeping guitar and delicate percussion. One line in particular, Nail explains, encapsulates the daily struggle people with depression face: "What’s wrong in my head? It's just who I am," he sings.
"I think for people who have gone through it, that's what you end up asking yourself and saying to yourself the most," he admits. "You're just as confused by it as those people around you. It's not anybody's fault. Nobody's to blame for this situation and for me being like this. But at the same time, this is who I am, for better or for worse."
Nail says when he first came to grips with his depression, his wife wanted to better understand it. So, she'd do research online and read books on depression, wanting to get even a small idea of what was happening in his head — so she could help him. The heart of the song stems from this.
"There may be some books on the best way to try to manage it, but there's no answers that's going to make it any simpler," Nail notes. "Everybody is different and everybody's situation is different. That was more or less what I was saying in the song. One of the most frustrating aspects of going through chronic, severe depression and being able to sustain any sort of consistency, is coming to grips with the fact that there is no cure. There's things that you can do to manage it, but there's no answers and everybody's different."
Fans were drawn to "In My Head" when Nail and his band started sharing new music, so he decided to release it ahead of the album, hoping it will speak to others who are suffering. While he says depression is still very prevalent in his life, Nail now finds comfort in the fact that he knows things will get better.
"Since I went public with my battle, the coolest thing is when people come up and say, 'Hey, I didn't know anything about your music. I didn't know anything about you, and somebody sent me this article, and it just encouraged me that I wasn't alone,'" he shares. "That means more and affects you more than any time anybody's ever come up and said anything about your music. It's an interview of me being open and honest about something and it motivated somebody to talk about their struggles. Those of us who have those issues, I really think depend on that open and honest conversation to remind us that it's okay, and that it's okay to reach out and ask somebody for help."
David Nail & the Well Ravens' Only This and Nothing More album will be available in full on Sept. 14.
David Nail's "In My Head" Lyrics:
No more I’m sorry / I won't waste your time / I’m all out of reasons why / So tired of feeling that I’ve let you down / Can't help but wonder where your heart is now
I don't want pity for being this way / It ain't your problem, no you ain’t to blame / Don't have the answer, no I don't understand / What’s wrong in my head? / It's just who I am
I have been labeled, been misunderstood / So hard to be happy even when things are good / You are the best thing that I've ever know / Girl, I won't blame you if someday you go
No more I’m sorry / I won't waste your time
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