In a recent podcast on Resident Advisor (RA Exchange EX.355 @51:00 min onward), UK-based Bass-Producer Om Unit talks about mental health issues of DJs. According to him, problems arise for example because of sleep deprivation and because of being on the road constantly. He states, that recently there’s been a more open discussion about it, but still there needs do be done more discussing.
Just 4 days ago the documentary „Why We DJ – Slaves to the Ryhthm“ was published on the same issue, covering portraits and statements by DJs like Carl Cox, Seth Troxler or Eric Morillo.
All of them are well aware that it’s complaining bout first world problems and compared to an assembly line worker it’s hell of fun living this lifestyle – but it comes with a price. Nevertheless, some tweeters don’t seem to see that:
If you djs get fed up with your life , i will swap it for my plumbing and heating life , lifting boilers , soldering , breathing in dust etc
— Daz Davison (@Dazdee1) October 20, 2017
As far as i know, no research’s been done on that exact matter. Although british psychologist Alinka Greasley, who also appears in „Whe We DJ“, has done some work on music and wellbeing. Looks like that’s a topic where more needs to be done.
Update (9 Nov. 17): the current issue of the german magazine „Groove“ dedicates 14 pages to the issue of mental health of electronic dance musicians, djs and club owner, featuring interviews with Christian Beyer (Âme) or Luke Slater amongst others. Looking forward to that read!
Update (14 Jan 18): djtechtools dedicates a blogpost to depression amongst DJs and producers. They indicate a british support initiative Music Minds Matter, that offers a 24h-hotline for affected people and their friends and relatives: 0808 802 8008. Unfortunately, this number is UK-only, and there is no such service in Germany (at least to my knowledge). But you can reach ‚em also via mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I also learned that, contrary to what I wrote before, there is in fact an academic work concerned with exactly this matter. You can find a summary and link to the full study here.