Luttrell and Wife Sara James Pen a Poignant Mental Health Message

Feb 17, 2023

Staley Sharples

3 min read

Luttrell’s hit Anjunadeep single “Around You” stemmed from a personal place, bringing the melodic techno maestro together with his fiancé Sara James in a one-of-a-kind collaboration that holds great significance to the musical couple.

Simple, heartfelt lyrics, written by Luttrell and Sara James, punctuate the emotional melody. He recalls that the song came together during a late-night studio session on a typically rainy Seattle night. “Sara and I wrote and sang the lyrics, ‘feel it all around you, feel the love around you; you belong, you belong here.’ It was the first time we had ever worked on anything musically, which was really exciting. When I heard her singing the lyrics, it was clear her angelic, 2000s-trance vocal style would meld with the track beautifully. It’s a song about belonging, love, and about feeling good.”

Speaking about the making of “Around You,” Sara James opened up on the intensity of writing music for the first time. Having never created or released music before, James was equal parts enthusiastic and intimidated. Luttrell was a stabilizing force and helped her identify her artistic value.

“I had a lot of anxiety and at least one panic attack leading up to the release of this song. The imposter syndrome was real. I don’t think of myself as an artist. I’m not a singer. I want to be more aware of how I portray myself online, often sharing only the ‘good times’ and highlights of my life.”

The single’s release in September 2022 coincided with National Suicide Prevention Month and served as a poignant reminder of how fragile her mental health had previously been. Her and Luttrell’s move from San Francisco to Seattle triggered a deep depression that she struggled to find her way beyond. Past traumas haunted her, and James felt hopeless. However, the power of music and her love for Luttrell helped her reconnect with herself.

“Eric showed me the new music he was working on and then sang the words, ‘feel it all around you, feel the love around you; you belong, you belong here’. I cried and he asked me to sing it. I wasn’t feeling the lyrics but I sang them anyway,” she recalls. “I guess I sang the words enough times until I tricked my brain into believing they were true, because I started to feel better. Music heals. If someone tells you they aren’t okay, please just listen and believe them. I truly believe in life all you need to get through is just one good friend. Thank you Eric for your music and always helping me pull myself up when I feel like I can’t do it alone. I hope this track makes someone feel less alone, like it did for me.”

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