Gary Barlow: ‘I slowly went insane when Take That split up’

'X Factor' judge reveals: 'I rubbed my face on my hit-making piano'

Take That singer Gary Barlow has revealed that he went through a prolonged period of depression when the band split in 1996.

The singer said he became overweight following the break up and he used to disguise himself because he felt so embarrassed.

He told The Guardian: “I was living in Cheshire at the time, going to London and back on the train. I used to heavily disguise myself, with a hat and everything. I was overweight, I wasn’t feeling great. I was embarrassed to be me, to have people recognise me.”

Barlow added: “It wasn’t not being famous any more, or even not being a recording artist. It was having nobody who needed me, no phones ringing, nothing to do.”

The singer also admitted that he felt like he was “slowly going insane” during his years away from the band.

He added: “It was all a bit of a torment. I had this beautiful white piano, my lucky piano. Every hit I’d had I’d written on this piano. Within six months of this not happening any more, this piano drove me mad.

“To the point where I spent days just looking at it, lying underneath it, lying on top of it, rubbing my face on it, going slowly insane, trying to work out why this thing wasn’t delivering to me like it used to.”

Barlow said that he only felt “valid” again when he rejoined the Manchester band in 2006.

He added:

That day was the first time in years that I got on the train, took my hat off and just sat there. People were coming up and being so nice. It felt so good.

Reports recently claimed that Take That are planning to take a two-year break from music.