Medication Time, the highly-awaited album from longtime British Blues/Americana stalwart Todd Sharpville, explores a period of his life 16 years ago where the stress of a child contact battle during a messy breakup resulted in a total breakdown and a 2 month stay in a mental hospital in West Wales.
Speaking of his experience in a mental institution, Todd explains the circumstances that led him there. “I wasn’t emotionally prepared for the sudden separation from my children that came with the divorce. Up until then I was somewhat of a control freak, so the realisation that control is but an illusion never really dawned on me until I found myself floored by reactive depression, suicidal, & sectioned within a state-run facility. Men rarely discuss these kinds of emotions with one another, so they can often surprise the hell out of us and prove to be too overwhelming to cope with. Being a musician, I was lucky that I was able to fit the practicalities of my working life around my predicament. I also have some amazing friends. I managed to get back on my feet. Many people don’t have these luxuries. Many fall by the wayside and never get back up again.”
Spanning twelve blues-fuelled tracks (consisting of nine originals and three covers), Medication Time examines & expresses many of the emotions that led to the breakdown, the hospital stay, and the slow climb back to figurative normality. The album was recorded in West Greenwich Rhode Island, produced by 2-time Grammy nominee & multi BMA winner Duke Robillard and features two duets: one with Detroit artist Larry McCray, the other with Rhode Island’s own Sugar Ray Norcia.
The first single is the duet with McCray entitled ‘Brothers.’ Larry has been a close friend of Todd’s for over 30 years.
On their relationship, Todd tells us: “Larry called me most days when I was in hospital. He didn’t always know quite what to say, but simply did his best to give me brotherly advice & remind me that I was loved. Fast forward all these years later, and Larry and I have shouldered each other through so many more of each other’s trials & tribulations. Addiction recovery, divorce, financial strife, grief, cancer, you name it! Larry was an integral part of my ‘Medication Time’ story, so I wanted to write a song that aptly documented a brotherly friendship of thirty five years that exists regardless of the physical contrasts of race, nationality & background. To quote BB King, ‘…we are our brother’s keeper. Red, white, black, brown or yellow, rich or poor, we all have the blues.'”
Medication Time / DFGCD8834 is out May 20th on DixieFrog Records