Wolfgang Van Halen Can’t Watch His ‘Distance’ Video
He put the song together several years ago and didn't plan to make it part of his new Mammoth WVH album, but in the aftermath of his dad’s death, he released the track with a video that features clips of them together through their lives.
“‘Distance’ is a song that I wrote between 2013 and 2015,” Wolfgang told SongFacts in a new interview. “My father had struggled with his health a lot throughout the years, and it was a song that came out during one of the darker times, where it was my brain playing a scenario of what it would be like if I didn't have him in my life, and being able to focus on the idea that while we may not be together at some point, we're never really that far apart.”
You can watch the video below.
Asked if it had been difficult to watch the footage, he said: “I had been watching it anyway. I had never been through such a heavy loss in my life before. But that's what I had been doing: looking for any kind of footage I may have had. Then we decided to release the song, and it just seemed like the right thing to do. So, I watched as much as I could to supply the clips for the video, but now that the video is out, I can't watch it.”
He also revealed that several songs on his album deal with mental health issues, saying the track “Mammoth” was about “anxiety and depression.”
“I guess it's some sort of mantra to convince myself to keep going and convince anybody else to keep going when they're doubting themselves," he noted. He added that he “absolutely” experienced anxiety and depression himself. “I think back in the day, it was like, 'Why are you sad? Cheer up!' And it's more a chemical thing than a 'Why don't you smile more?' kind of thing. I think it was looked on more as a joke back in the day, and now it's being taken more seriously, as it should.”
Asked if his dad suffered similar problems, Wolfgang responded: “Absolutely. It's one of the main reasons why I'm such an anxious person. And it's why he drank.”