Pop artist Alec Benjamin has given everything to music over the last decade on his path to mainstream success. The Arizona native started in the industry by promoting his music in parking lots of popular concert venues but made his mainstream debut in the late 2010s. In 2019, the singer/songwriter teamed up with Alessia Cara for the multi-platinum single “Let Me Down Slowly,” which landed on the Billboard Hot 100. Earlier this year, Benjamin released his highly anticipated sophomore album, (Un)Commentary, which features introspective tracks like “Devil Doesn’t Bargain,” “Hill I Will Die On,” and “Hipocrite.”
Benjamin is no stranger to vulnerability in his music and prefers to let his mental state dictate the type of songs he creates. The first track from his debut album, “Mind is a Prison,” was recorded at one of the lowest points in his life. In Sound Mind’s latest episode of Unmasked, he opened up about his journey with mental health and overcoming the challenges that come with Obsessive-compulsive Disorder (OCD). Unmasked was created to destigmatize conversations around mental health and highlight SoundMind’s free mental health resources available to everyone.
As he recalled, Benjamin has trouble prioritizing tasks and perseverating on the past. “One of the ways I cope with it is to figure out the ways that it also has a positive influence on my life,” he explained. “Why I got into music is because I became obsessed with music, learning how to play guitar, and write songs.”
Elsewhere during the interview, he credited therapy for the positive shift in his mental health, arguing that more people can benefit from having conversations about what they are feeling. He told Billboard, “For me, mental health and physical health are synonymous. It’s important to continue to have an open dialogue about mental health so that we can eliminate the stigma surrounding it and understand it more clearly.”
Music is a form of therapy for artists and fans alike, so it is vital for artists like Benjamin to continue being open and vocal about their mental health journeys. Check out Alec Benjamin’s episode of Unmasked and stay tuned for more to come from Sound Mind.
This content was created in partnership with Sound Mind.