Speaking to Apple Music, the DJ explained how his collaboration with the pop star came together after years of the pair running into one another at various awards shows and industry events.
"So she did the song and then I got it and it was just kind of piano and that's about it. And so then I was like, how can I create an instrumental, instruments, that complement the emotion of the song?" he told Zane Lowe. "So in the beginning it's very slow and stuff, so I made the instrumental very slow. And then during the hook, which is the resolve of the song, I kind of picked it up with the energy and it's kind of like a little dance tune."
"I think that was a huge driving force in making the song, as well, as there was only one way the song could be," Marshmello continued. "And so I spent a long time trying to find that exact moment where I was like, "Oh, okay, this is exactly how the song should sound. This is how it makes me feel." So it was just kind of like emotion turned to music in a way."
Marshmello also explained that the track's emotional subject matter took on a new meaning, given that it's being released on World Suicide Prevention Day.
"I think it's just such an important subject," he affirmed. "I think a lot of people, about negative feelings and negative thoughts that are affecting them are kind of scared to bring it up, scared to talk about it. When in reality, they're scared because maybe the person won't relate or the person won't understand, when in reality most of time the person that you could bring it up to, will most likely has felt like this or will understand or can relate as well. So I think it's very important to talk about it."
Watch the video for "OK Not To Be OK" below.