Music Helped Singer Two Feet Climb Out From Rock Bottom
With major hits like “I Feel Like I’m Drowning,” which reached number one on the alternative charts, and a successful debut album, A 20 Something Fuck, it’s surprising to learn that not all that long ago, singer Two Feet majorly struggled with his mental health.
Two Feet, a.k.a. Bill Dess, was about to embark on a tour just as COVID-19 shut down the world. Quarantined at home, he recently sat down with Men’s Health to talk about his personal journey, which he says was difficult and sometimes embarrassing. “It took around five months for me to really want to go out and say ‘hi’ to some of my friends and respond to people,” he says. “It took me even longer than that to feel comfortable addressing my fans and be in video chats like this.”
Dess eventually went into treatment for his mental health, where he discovered that his personal mode of coping was the opposite of what his friends and team had told him to do. “The main thing I made myself do was to keep working,” Dess told Dr. Drew Ramsey, M.D. “I needed to dive back into what I felt was healthiest, and that was when I was writing a ton of music, interacting with people, and oddly enough, being on the road playing shows.” He also found that developing this structured routine really helped him mentally; he says that he often feels distracted and a schedule seemed to help.
It was a few months later when Dess found himself touring with Panic! At the Disco that he met his life coach, who helped him overhaul his approach to mental health. He started to cook more (he loves blueberries, Brussels sprouts and salmon), continued writing music, and began sharing his story with his fans. “I’ve received so many emails and messages about how it’s helped fans in some way or another,” Dess says.
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“Depression is very common in entertainment. It’s an incredibly hard job. Some days you’re excited to get on stage and some days you almost feel like you’re going to cry. There’s something super comforting right now about doing the same thing at the same time of the day.”
Nowadays, it’s a little hard for Dess to do that, what with the world being on coronavirus lockdown. But he’s actually managed to find a way to stay creative and is almost finished writing a new album. But from his journey, the most important takeaway for him is the message that life will get better.
“It took a lot of hard work, some miserable, sad nights and months of post-depression to finally get to a place where I feel comfortable,” Dess says. “Things are not going to happen overnight, nor should you expect to. Let it take its own time. But it will pass and it will go away.”
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