DON DOKKEN On His Mental Health: 'I Have Depression. I'm Bipolar'

October 10, 2023

During an appearance on the latest episode of the "Battleline" podcast, DOKKEN frontman Don Dokken reflected on the passing of SOUNDGARDEN singer Chris Cornell more than six years ago. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Chris Cornell was one of my favorite singers. I mean, God, he had some just amazing vocals, and he had a great sound. And when I saw that video where he played Detroit [the night before he died], and said, 'I'll see you on tour.' He's got a wife and kids. He goes back to his hotel room and hangs himself. I don't relate.

"Life is short, man," he continued. "We're not born with a certificate that says, 'You have now been born and we promise you'll have a wonderful life.' It doesn't work that way, man. You've gotta fight for success, you've gotta fight for what you wanna do, you've gotta fight to be a musician, you've gotta fight to keep going. But a lot of these guys just get depression. It's genetic, and they commit suicide. It broke my heart when Chris did that. And Layne [Staley] and ALICE IN CHAINS and all those other bands, I just didn't get it.

"I have depression," Dokken added. "I'm bipolar. I'm up; I'm down. Some days I wanna write a rock song — uptempo, kickin' ass, just rockin'. That's the mood I'm in. Then the next day, I'm feelin' mopey, and I might write a song like 'Heaven Sent'. It just depends on whatever the universe gives me. But I would never kill myself. I've got children, and I've got my family, and I just don't relate to that. But that's another story."

DOKKEN will release its 13th studio album, "Heaven Comes Down", on October 27 via Silver Lining Music. The LP was produced by Bill Palmer and Don Dokken and was mixed by Kevin Shirley (AEROSMITH, IRON MAIDEN).

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