Johnny O’Neil’s “Take Me Down” Moves Through The Darkness Of Opioid Addiction Towards Hope

[Cover photo credit to Tommy Sommers & Kyle Hansen]

Johnny O’Neil has released the second single and video, “Take Me Down”, from his third album Brand New Day. O’Neil is a founding member of Rock band Dare Force that performed five nights a week, 50 weeks a year, for 11 straight years. He also holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology which gives him a concern for the human condition gleaned as a therapist and forensic psychologist. The new track handles the difficult subject of widespread opioid addiction.

Discussing the new video for “Take Me Down”, Johnny O’Neil says:

The subject matter is something that has touched just about everybody in some form or fashion, the epidemic of opioid addiction. When it came time to shoot the video our stellar videographers, Brianna and Kurt Jorgensen, had a very clear concept in mind, shooting the entire video in black and white. As such, there is a more cinematic ambience, and ironically it seemed to soften the more disturbing scenes.

I wanted to convey a glimpse into that terrible affliction through the view of a narrator looking in from the outside. It was a delicate line to tread; we didn’t want to be gratuitous in capturing the inherently dark nature of this crisis, while at the same time conveying that there is hope, and help for anyone who is suffering. It is obviously quite a departure from our first video for the title track, but it also serves to showcase the range of emotions and sonic landscapes that we traverse as a band on this album.

Johnny O’Neil adds about the song:

This song was the first “O’Neil & Funk” songwriting collaboration of the three tunes John Funk and I co-wrote for ‘Brand New Day.’ John had a killer chord progression he had been keeping in his back pocket for years, and presented it to the band at a rehearsal. I was able to come up with a complimentary riff that fit with John’s descending chord progression, and the melody line and lyrics took shape in my head pretty quickly as we refined the arrangement of the song.

Johnny O’Neil has announced the following show:

11/24 – St. Paul, MN – The Doghouse