real life

Ricky Martin on how he copes with sadness: "I was dying inside. Music saved my life."

When you see him performing his up-tempo songs and shakin’ that famous bon-bon, it’s hard to imagine Ricky Martin being anything but happy and gregarious.

Yet on The Voice last night, the 43-year-old admitted his on-stage exuberance has often served as a cover, and a distraction, for feelings of sadness and vulnerability.

RELATED: Voice coach Jessie J “not OK” after emergency operation.

“I’ve been sad in my life, trust me,” Martin told contestant Deanna Rose following her performance of Lana Del Rey’s Video Games. 

“Sometimes I’d jump on stage to push that sadness away from me and sometimes people would ask me ‘Ricky, how are you feeling?’ and I’d be like ‘I’m fine, I’m fine, I’m fine’ — PS. I was dying inside. Music saved my life.” (Post continues after gallery.)

One highly-publicised sad point in Martin’s private life was the end of his long-term relationship with Carlos Gonzalez Abella. The pair, who began dating in the same year the She Bangs singer came out as gay, parted ways early last year.

Martin said the relationship and breakup partly influenced his latest album A Quien Quiera Escuchar.

RELATED: The best thing you can do for yourself in the wake of a breakup.

“After six years of being in a very steady relationship with him, yes, we have a lot of stories and we have a lot of moments of love and lots of light and yes, he is part of this album,” the father of twin boys told Pride Source earlier this year.

Martin says music saved his life. (Image: Instagram)


Last night, Martin said he spun his chair around during Rose's performance — as did the rest of the judging panel — because her singing had struck an emotional chord.

"I felt in touch with something you were giving me... I felt so much sadness, so much vulnerability," the multi-Grammy Award winner said.


RELATED: Ruby Rose reflects on her struggles with mental illness.

"You were telling me your story and there's something I want to get to know more of and there's something in there in your heart... Your eyes are telling me something. I'm intrigued, and your voice did the same." (Post continues after video.)

He's one insightful man, that Ricky Martin — in the recorded package that preceded her taking the stage, Rose explained singing had helped her overcome a difficult childhood. "When I sing it's a place I can totally be free. Music is what makes me special," the 30-year-old said.

Singing might be the golden ticket for Martin and Rose, but everyone copes with feeling low in different ways.

RELATED: Can we love happiness? Or do we then risk more sadness?

If you find yourself feeling sad and overwhelmed regularly, to the point where it's having an impact on your life, remember there is always someone there to help. Talk to a trusted love one, arrange an appointment with your GP, or use one of the many counselling hotlines Australia has to offer — such as Lifeline (13 11 14). You don't have to suffer in silence.

When you're feeling sad, what helps to lift your mood?