Judas Priest lead singer Rob Halford recently spoke to Spain’s Mariskal Rock and reflected on how he manages his mental health. Halford revealed that although he is in a better mood now compared to the past, he still experiences moments of depression from time to time.
The legendary frontman proved himself also as an author besides his vocal skills. Rob Halford released his autobiographical work, ‘Confess,’ in September 2020, in which he dives into his personal and professional struggles. As you may remember, Halford publicly revealed his homosexuality back in 1998 during an MTV interview. In the metal world dominated by a masculine image, Halford experienced difficulties revealing his sexuality.
As stated by Halford before, hiding his sexuality dragged him into moods of depression and isolation. He also struggled with alcohol and drug abuse at that time. During the making of Judas Priest’s album, ‘Turbo,’ in 1986, his substance abuse increased, and his mental health deteriorated, so he had to go to rehab. He has been sober since then but still experiences moments of depression.
Rob Halford stated that feeling negative was like a circle for him at the time, and he didn’t know how to get out of that state of mind. Halford explained that his sexual identity was definitely a big part of his substance problems, but there was more than that. He couldn’t think rationally about many things and felt utterly lost. Rob Halford revealed that he still finds himself in a depressive mood sometimes, but he knows that it won’t take long and will pass in the end.
Rob Halford is reflecting on his mental health struggles:
“You just feel… It’s negative thinking. It’s like a cycle of negativity. You don’t feel or see a way out. It’s just like this circle of — like a black hole; you cannot find a way to escape it. Even though you think about the place that you’re at — you’re in a successful band, you’re financially stable, your friends and your family are good, everything is great, but you yourself are in this really dark place in your mind.
For me, of course, I talk about my sexual identity. For the longest time, that played a role in my addictions, but I don’t think that was the complete story. I just think I was just confused about a lot of things — about not exactly why are we here, what are we doing, what’s the purpose, but all of these little incremental thoughts start to play in your mind and they amplify and they amplify and they amplify and you can’t break through — you can’t break through with rational, logical thinking.”
He continued by saying:
“It’s a very important topic in life to pursue and to try and find answers to. And you can never really one hundred percent shake it off. I still go through moments of depression — not as bad as it was, but I do. But I know… I go, ‘Okay…’ This, to me, to some extent, is a chemical imbalance. It just happens. And I know it’s not gonna last. That’s the good thing.
I go, ‘Okay, I’m feeling like shit. I don’t know what’s going on, but this is gonna pass.’ And it passes. Again, it’s part of understanding why you’re feeling in that place. Some of it you bring into your body; some of it is just part of your brain chemical function. And again, there are outlets. There are wonderful people ready to be there with you and get you through those moments.”
You can watch the interview on Mariskal Rock below.