70 Percent of Musicians say they have suffered from depression or anxiety which comes as no surprise as it is such a competitive and high-pressure industry. Matty Carter from the New York duo Matty Carter + Ariel has used his depression to share awareness and show people you can take something difficult and turn it into something incredible through art. From overcoming suicide attempts, mental breakdowns, and battling manic depression, which Matty was diagnosed with during the first grade at school this is a cathartic release for him.
‘Creating With Depression’ is a series which explores the link between artistry and depression and taking a different perspective in the hope of inspiring a positive change.
Here are some excerpts from an open letter where Matty Carter states:
“Depression has kept me down most of my life. At a point I said to myself, Why me? Why make me feel this way all the time? I got exhausted from feeling sorry for myself. I made the decision that no matter how bad it gets… no matter how low or alone I feel… I’m going to fight for my life.”
“There is so much bad that comes along with depression but in that moment.. the lowest moment of my life.. I felt powerful. I wanted to immediately start creating all these visuals racing through my mind and I started putting on paper the words and lyrics I saw in my head and I feverishly began recording the melodies I was hearing and I desperately was trying to understand who these people were I was seeing in my dreams and visions… and for a period of time… I felt so high and clear and happy.”
“Creating with depression. I create with Manic Depression. I get really high highs and really low lows. Sometimes the low lasts a week or a month… sometimes just a few hours… but I started to realize that I could use these low moments to my advantage… to create visuals and songs that nobody else can and realized this is how I will leave my mark on this world. This is how I’ll change the world and make my existence with depression tolerable.”
“I don’t think you can say we would have some of the most iconic artwork that we have without depression. Amy Winehouse, Van Gogh, Basquiat, Bukowski, Heath Ledger, Robin Williams, Kurt Cobain, Mark Rothko, Ian Curtis, Chris Cornell, Chester Bennington, Donny Hathaway and the list continues…. These people gave the world some of the most beautiful and pure pieces of art, ever, and they were all depressed, extremely creative minds.”
Matty Carter + Ariel’s latest single ‘Bad’ is a glorious amalgamation of soft rock and a nod to 80s electronica with hard-hitting lyrics which take a different stance when you have the knowledge of Matty’s depression. Despite that, there is something incredibly lifting about it lyrically, (“nobody’s stopping me now”), and in tone and tempo. Matty spits in his distinctive rasping voice, “My time is coming baby, nobody is holding me down.” MC + A have partnered with the international anti-bullying charity, Ditch The Label, upon the single release and will be donating a portion of the song’s proceeds in hopes of creating positive change.
Their single ‘Voices’ has nearly 300K Youtube/Vevo views, and VEVO is currently featuring MC+A’s ‘Ready To Die‘ visual in their ‘Incoming Alternative’ playlist.
Matty Carter + Ariel pour their heart and soul into their music so it becomes an extension of themselves. They continue to prove time and time again what exciting, intriguing and inspiring artists they are for this generation and beyond.
Read our interview with Matty Carter + Ariel.