Yungblud Reveals He Wondered If the 'Best Career Move Would Be Death' After 'Authenticity' Backlash

Yungblud said that he thought about the deaths of rappers Mac Miller and Lil Peep during a period of internet backlash

Yungblud
Yungblud. Photo: John Phillips-Pool/Getty

Yungblud is entirely confident in his efforts to bring authenticity to his music — but it took him time to get there, especially after facing the wrath of internet trolls.

The "Memories" singer, 24, opened up to NME about having to defend himself from those accusing him of being a so-called "industry plant," and of being unable to actually play his own instruments.

The British musician (real name: Dominic Harrison) said that during one of his lower points, his thoughts turned dark, and wandered to the accidental drug overdose deaths of Mac Miller, 26, and Lil Peep, 21, in 2018 and 2017, respectively.

"When everyone was questioning my authenticity, I started to look back at artists like Mac Miller and Lil Peep, because the internet turned on them, too," he said. "They built them up, and then f—ing tore them down before they passed. And then I got into this place where I thought the best career move would be death."

Yungblud continued: "I thought, 'If I die right now, would people look beyond a horrible trend on Twitter or TikTok? Would they give me a chance?' They would say, 'Ah, isn't it sad he died? He had so much to say,' or 'People judged him'."

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Questions surrounding his talent emerged last fall during the Life on Mars tour, during which a Twitter user claimed he was not actually playing his guitar during a performance.

The star, who is pansexual, defended himself on Twitter at the time, but has also been accused of appropriating the working class and of being a "queer-baiter," according to NME.

Critics have also suggested he's an "industry plant" whose family connections — his dad reportedly once owned a guitar shop that catered to famous musicians like Oasis' Noel Gallagher — helped him sign his record deal in 2017.

Now, Yungblud said he's been able to put the naysayers aside and has come around to fully believing in himself.

Yungblud attends the 2021 iHeartRadio Music Festival on September 18, 2021 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Yungblud. Isaac Brekken/Getty

"I know I am the f—ing real deal, even though that's exactly what some people want to hear me say. I know what I have to say is from a place of truth," he said. "Being called an 'industry plant' doesn't bother me, because who decides if an artist is successful or not? The labels don't; Spotify doesn't; NME doesn't. It's down to the actual listeners."

The star's self-titled third album is scheduled to drop in September, and he told NME the new record is his way of trying to "humanize" the caricature that's developed around his name and image.

"I am everything people hate. I'm loud, I speak my mind and I tell the truth, no matter what. And you know what I'm a cocky little s—, too," he said. "[But] I am a vehicle for other people's expression – the fans have stuck with me, as I fight for them. But other people have been watching me with a microscope, waiting for me to slip up."

Yungblud will follow his second album Weird!, which topped the U.K. album charts upon its release in December 2020.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

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