The recent suicide deaths of Chris Cornell and Chester Bennington have brought the topics of depression and mental health to the forefront, and one rocker who is all too aware of the struggles that come with depression is Scott Stapp, who endured a very public meltdown in 2014.

Speaking with the Longview News-Journal in a new interview, Stapp drives home the point that further education and understanding of those dealing with mental health issues is needed. "I think the mental illness conversation is something that we all need to get more knowledgeable about and have more compassion about and less judgment, and realize it's a serious disease and treat it as such," Stapp explained.

When asked about the two high profile musician deaths, Stapp stated, "I wouldn't say I was close (to Bennington or Cornell), but I definitely had a tremendous amount of respect for both of them and admired their work and felt connected to what their struggles were because my struggles have been the same."

He continued, "It's really not in their control. It's a disease just like cancer. Hopefully, with the string of deaths, it just raises awareness and people aren't so judgmental and make mockery of people who are suffering whether they are celebrities, friends or family members."

Stapp was eventually treated and diagnosed with bipolar disorder after his 2014 experience. “I didn’t know whether I’d ever tour again, make music again,” Stapp admitted in an interview earlier this year. “So to be out there now and having amazing shows and the fans turning out, it just fills me with such a deep appreciation and gratitude.”

The singer addressed some of his struggles and journey in The Madness, the latest album from Art of Anarchy. And his story has come full circle with his family life back on track and his wife Jaclyn expecting a child that will arrive around Thanksgiving this year.

The singer spoke in depth about channeling his struggles into Art of Anarchy's music and shared more about his fight with mental illness during one of our Loudwire podcasts back in April of this year. You can hear that discussion with hosts Graham Hartmann and Joe DiVita in the player below.

Scott Stapp Appears on the Loudwire Podcast