Slaves’ Isaac Holman shares message on mental health: “Approach with kindness, always”

Slaves’ Isaac Holman has shared an emotional post about mental health online.

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Holman shared a picture of him mid-gig at a festival smiling and seemingly happy.

However, he revealed in the post that behind the scenes, he was “unwell” and had to get taken to perform at gigs by his parents due to the debilitating nature of his illness.


“This is what mental illness can look like,” Holman wrote. “At this point in my life I was so unwell I couldn’t be without my parents. I used to get taken to gigs by them and cry in the car and say I couldn’t do it.

“Then I’d get on stage and smash it and no one would have a clue. You never know what’s going on in someone’s head.”

He concluded the post: “Approach with kindness always.” You can see the post here:

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A post shared by @isaacholman_


Back in March, the Slaves drummer announced details of his debut solo album, released under the name Baby Dave. ‘Monkey Brain’ was self-released on April 22, and features instrumental and production contributions from Blur and Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn as well new single ’29’.


It follows the project’s first single ‘Too Shy For Tennis’, which was released last summer and was also assisted by Albarn.

The album was written shortly after Holman suffered a mental breakdown and he previously praised Albarn for his help in co-producing the record while he was recovering.

The musician described the album as “a collection of tunes written from shortly after a debilitating mental breakdown at the start of 2019, up until now. Around half of the tunes on the record [were] co-produced by Damon Albarn who also plays various instruments throughout.

“I don’t know where this project would be if it wasn’t for him and I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to work with him and observe his wizardry. It was a proper game changer for me.

“Thank you for your patience, it shouldn’t have taken this long but ongoing issues with my mental health have made putting this record together incredibly challenging. Here we are though, we got there in the end.”

For help and advice on mental health:

  • Help Musicians UK – Around the clock mental health support and advice for musicians (CALL MUSIC MINDS MATTER ON: 0808 802 8008)
  • CALM – The Campaign Against Living Miserably
  • Music Support Org – Help and support for musicians struggling with alcoholism, addiction, or mental health issues (CALL: 0800 030 6789)
  • YOUNG MINDS – The voice for young people’s health and wellbeing
  • Time To Change – Let’s end mental health discrimination
  • The Samaritans – Confidential support 24 hours a day