“Shatter the Madness is an idea. It’s a song. It’s a video. It’s a hammer. A hammer to scatter the sadness and shatter the madness of our isolation, loneliness, depression. To help us feel again. Even if it’s to feel the pain. The pain lets you know that you’re alive.” This synopsis, courtesy of renowned songwriters Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin perfectly encompasses their newest body of work, Shatter the Madness. It is a four-part collection of songs and videos the two have written together over the years as a continuous narration of the everyday, blue-collar citizen’s life.
The project begins with “Good Man Gone Bad,” followed by “Legacy,” “The House that Built Me,” and caps off with title track “Shatter the Madness.” As you follow the winding, sometimes turbulent, path of life depicted in this collection, its honesty and relatability gives listeners a “home base” of sorts.
“As writers,” Douglas begins, “you want to have your finger on the pulse of ‘how are people feeling?’ So we absorb all that information—it’s all chaotic—and we want to make order out of all that chaos.” With 40 hit songs under their collective belt, Douglas and Shamblin know how to successfully do just that. Shatter the Madness is entirely introspective and encourages metacognition, effectively quieting the racing minds of the anxiety-ridden and rush-to-the-finish-line society, with the intention to focus that energy on hope and love.
All four songs are paired with their own video that brings the beautifully crafted lyrics to life as Douglas narrates with his acoustic rendition. With this, the project brings a whole new light and perspective to already well-known songs, making each one new again.
While the songwriters found their voices in creating these songs over the last twelve years, their true mission and hope was to encourage listeners to follow their heart, take big risks, and have the courage to do what they are called to. As tensions throughout the country run high and the search for answers grows more urgent, this series may be exactly what people need to hear. “My prayer is that these are songs about hope,” Shamblin says, “‘cause they are hope to me.”