Shinedown‘s current single, “Dead Don’t Die,” was a late addition to the band’s Planet Zero album, and there’s a reason why.
The lyrics to the track were written by guitarist Zach Myers, who was hesitant about showing it to frontman Brent Smith.
“When [Myers] played it for me just in the demo state, I was like, ‘You mean to tell me you had this the whole time, and you’re just now showing it to us?'” Smith tells ABC Audio. “And he goes, ‘I didn’t know what you were gonna think about it.'”
The reason for Myers’ uncertainty was that he’d actually written “Dead Don’t Die” about Smith and the demons he’s faced throughout the years.
“He watched me go through all these moments in my life,” Smith, who’s been sober since March 2016, says of Myers. “He’s been with me for two decades, and he’s watched me suffer, he’s watched me self-sabotage, he’s watched me come up from it.”
“Dead Don’t Die” isn’t the first song a Shinedown member has written about a bandmate — Smith wrote the ATTENTION ATTENTION single “GET UP” about bassist Eric Bass.
“I was so taken back when [Myers] told me that ’Dead Don’t Die’ was written about me,” Smith says. “It was very emotional for me. I know [‘GET UP’] was emotional for Eric.”
Smith feels that the close relationship the Shinedown members share allows them to write about each other.
“[Bass] embraced [‘GET UP’], just like I embraced ‘Dead Don’t Die,'” Smith says. “We’re a family, and families stay together.”
Shinedown’s currently on tour in support of Planet Zero. The outing continues Monday in Savannah, Georgia.
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