Hi, I’m Mandi Crimmins. I’m a singer-songwriter from Massachusetts now living in LA. My newest EP BORDERLINE is my artist statement and true “origin story”. The title comes from my recent diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder.
Making this EP truly saved my life. I was spiraling out of control, with my very volatile emotions being what was in control. But if I’m being honest, it’s not the first time I’ve felt this way.
Most of my life is colored in extremes. I always have felt too big for the room I was in. That nothing, not even myself, could hold me (or control me). For most of my life, I’ve grappled with feeling like who I am at my core is just broken.
Getting diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder was not entirely shocking to me. The truth is, a therapist five years prior had served me the same diagnosis and I never went back to see her after.
I was so afraid to see what was there, ashamed of myself, but also lacking knowledge of what it meant to have BPD. Lacking any understanding that it didn’t say anything about who I was as a person. Giving in to the stigma and letting it warp things.
Even after getting this most recent diagnosis, I didn’t want to tell people. It was that thought that made me realize that I absolutely NEEDED to tell people.
I truly feel that as an artist, it’s almost our job to be vulnerable and open about things that need to change in order for real change to happen. I didn’t want another person out there to have a therapist tell them they have BPD and them feel so ashamed that they never go back to see that doctor.
Whenever I feel out of control, I always turn to writing music because it really is free therapy. So I had been writing out all my feelings, the anger, the anxiety, the hopelessness, etc.
After my diagnosis, I was looking through all the songs I’d recently written and had this realization that they all fit together as a body of work when you look through the lens of Borderline Personality Disorder.
They just perfectly encapsulated how my BPD feels to me. Obviously, it was clear to me at that moment that I couldn’t just talk about having BPD. That’s when BORDERLINE was born.
“MELTDOWN” was already out when I had this revelation, so it was just a matter of finalizing the rest of the songs. I love to produce my own demos and nail down the general vibe of my music myself, so all the songs were produced by me before sending them out to the real pros who work their magic.
I got to work with a producer friend of mine Roi Bars out in San Diego for most of the EP (“MELTDOWN”, “PARANOIA”, “EGOMANIAC”, and “meltdown – stripped”).
For the two most emotionally-charged ones, I had the distinct honor of working with Max Haunt and Nick Lewert from alt-rock band The Haunt who took “BREAK ME DOWN” and “ILY, DON’T LEAVE” and fully understood the assignment. It was the gritty rock sound I was after, but still with the heartbreaking emotion in every beat.
Through the process of recording these songs, I actually started healing. For a while, I wasn’t sure I was going to be in a stable place when the EP came out.
Art was imitating life to the point where I couldn’t tell which was which. I wanted to put the EP out and release all the pain that was woven into a lot of it, but I couldnt if I was still tangled up in it.
Now I’m not “healed” and “all better”, but I do feel like I uncorked a bottle that’s been begging to be released. I feel lighter and I’ve found myself through it all.
What I mostly hope is that this record makes that person struggling to accept themself, that person struggling to come to terms with their pain, or the person begging to be understood, feel like they’re not alone in this fight. That there’s not any part of them to be ashamed of.
Listen to my new EP Borderline below and stream it everywhere else here.