If Dr. Hunter S. Thomspon, the legendary Gonzo journalist and the anarchic novelist offers you advice then you had better take it. Bill Murray went to the good Doctor after struggling with his mental health and Thompson’s advice to check out the singer John Prine helped pull him out of his depression.

The iconic writer, Thompson, only deals in truth and his advice could prove valuable to anyone – especially when figuring out how to sedate a full-grown elephant or blow up a small town. But you still maybe wouldn’t expect him to offer up many notions on how best to pull yourself from a bout of depression. In this footage, Bill Murray shares that advice and the song which helped him find his humor again.

The video which was shot in support of Prine’s first album in years The Tree of Forgiveness sees Murray detail Hunter’s advice and the track of Prine’s which finally got him to change his mood. Murray suggests in the video that following an episode of he describes as “not clinical depression” but more being a “real bummer to be around” that Thompson offered him some sage advice.

The advice is delivered to us via Murray and a pretty impeccable impression of Thompson. With his persona Murray embodies the writer to say that he should go to John Prine and the musician’s melancholy sense of humor for comic relief. The Fear and Loathing Las Vegas writer pointed toward Prine’s seminal record Great Days as a way out.

A dangerous move considering the double greatest hits album is widely considered one of the saddest records of all time. Featuring tracks like ‘Hello in There’ and ‘Sam Stone’ plus many other tearjerkers in the mammoth release it was by chance luck or divinity that instead, Murray settled on the song ‘Linda Goes to Mars’. He says in the film, it’s the moment he said “huh” and shrugs his shoulders.

The track is a tongue-in-cheek and upbeat moment of country humour mixed with the Swingtime pace of a dancefloor doozy. The song’s theme lands on a dimwitted husband who assumes his wife’s gormless expression as proof of life on Mars rather than a lack of interest in him.

The story Murray tells, as he thumbs through the book John Prine Beyond Words, is one of touching veracity and authenticity. Murray clearly has a very special place in his heart for Prine. After trying to have Prine flown in for the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor ceremony, Murray told the New York Post, “John Prine can make you laugh like no else can make you laugh.”

He made Bill Murray laugh enough with his song ‘Linda Goes to Mars’ to pull him from a bout of poor mental health and that is most definitely good enough for us.

We know better than anyone else that music can often be the saviour when one is experiencing darker moments of mental health. However, if music isn’t doing the job, please speak to someone who you can talk to.

[MORE] – Hunter S. Thompson and Bill Murray once invented a new sport: ‘Shotgun Golf’

Source: Open Culture

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