Suffer Well

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2. John The Revelator
3. Suffer Well
List of Playing The Angel songs
4. The Sinner In Me
Suffer Well
Song Suffer Well
By Depeche Mode
Songwriter Dave Gahan
Christian Eigner
Andrew Phillpott
Produced by Ben Hillier
Recorded at Sound Design (Santa Barbara)
Length (mm:ss) 3:49
Tempo 131 BPM
Time signature 4
Key E Minor
Programmed by Dave McCracken
Richard Morris
Original programming Christian Eigner
Andrew Phillpott
Engineered by Ben Hillier
Richard Morris
Mixing assistance Devin Workman
Kt Rangnick
Mastered by Emily Lazar
Mastering assistance Sarah Register
Recording assistance Nick Sevilla
Arjun Agerwala
Rudyard Lee Cullers
Devin Workman
Kt Rangnick
Art direction Anton Corbijn
Design Anton Corbijn
Photography Anton Corbijn
Recorded January - July 2005
Originally released 27 March 2006
Live performances as Depeche Mode 124 times *
Total live performances 124 times *

"Suffer Well" is a song from the 2005 album Playing The Angel and is the first Depeche Mode single to have been written by Dave Gahan. It was released as a single on 27 March 2006.


Dave Gahan told The Wave Magazine in 2005:

"There's a song I wrote on the new album called 'Suffer Well'. When it started out, it was a much slower song and we just decided to go in a really pop way with it. Which is a contrast to what it’s saying lyrically, which is: Suffer well, because whatever it is you’re suffering, if you suffer well enough, you won’t have to suffer anymore. It’s something that was said to me a long time ago, which I did not understand. A guy who was sitting with me and had a lot more experience in life – an older gentleman – said, 'You know, David, suffer well.' And I was like, 'What the fuck are you talking about? Thanks a lot, man!' It came back to me a few years ago, what he was really saying: Suffer well, and if you suffer well enough, you can move on."

Dave Gahan told M6's TV show 'Focus Rock' in October 2007:

"I really like 'Suffer Well' actually, [the music video is] fun. And that was was quite a challenge to make, there. The song is about, in, what you believe to be suffering, is where you grow and learn about yourself. Sometimes it's difficult, if you really wanna grow. So once a friend of mine said to me years ago, when I was complaining about life or whatever, my life, he said to me very calmly, "You know David, just suffer well." And I was so angry, I was like... But years later, it made sense, it made a lot of sense."

When Ben Hillier was asked in 2017 how much 'Suffer Well' has been changed from the demo, he replied:

"From what I can remember, we sped it up a bit and put the drum groove on. I think Martin came up with guitar riff but it may have been on the demo and he also tweaked the chords in the chorus. Dave kept working on the vocals up to the last minute to get them just right."


Suffer Well

Where were you when I fell from grace

A frozen heart an empty space

Something's changed and it's in your eyes

Please don't speak you'll only lie

I found treasure not where I thought

Peace of mind can't be bought

Still I believe

Just hang on

Suffer well

Sometimes it's hard

It's hard to tell

An angel led me when I was blind

I said take me back I've changed my mind

Now I believe

From the blackest room I was torn

You called my name my love was born

So I believe

Just hang on

Suffer well

Sometimes it's hard

It's hard to tell

Songwriter: Dave Gahan / Christian Eigner / Andrew Phillpott
Publishing Information: ©2005 JJSR Productions Inc. / Universal Music Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

Music video

Live performances

Main article: Available recordings of "Suffer Well"
Main article: List of dates where "Suffer Well" was played

1981-1985: Dreaming Of MeNew LifeJust Can't Get EnoughSee YouThe Meaning Of Love
Leave In SilenceGet The Balance RightEverything CountsLove In ItselfPeople Are PeopleMaster And ServantBlasphemous Rumours / SomebodyShake The DiseaseIt's Called A Heart
1986-1989: StrippedBut Not TonightA Question Of LustA Question Of TimeStrangelove
Never Let Me Down AgainBehind The WheelLittle 15Personal Jesus
1990-1998: Enjoy The SilencePolicy Of TruthWorld In My EyesI Feel YouWalking In My ShoesCondemnationIn Your RoomBarrel Of A GunIt's No GoodHomeUseless
Only When I Lose Myself
2001-2009: Dream OnI Feel LovedFreeloveGoodnight LoversPreciousA Pain That I'm Used To
Suffer WellJohn The Revelator / LilianMartyrWrongPeaceFragile Tension / Hole To Feed
2013-2017: HeavenSoothe My SoulShould Be HigherWhere's The RevolutionGoing Backwards
Cover Me
2023: Ghosts Again
1992-1998: Faith HealerDriftingStalker / Missing Piece
2000-2008: Strange HoursJezebelPreyAllelujah
2003-2008: Dirty Sticky FloorsI Need YouBottle Living / Hold OnA Little PieceKingdomSaw Something / Deeper And Deeper
2012-2015: Longest DayTake Me Back HomeAll Of This And NothingShine
1989-2003: CompulsionStardustLoverman
2012-2015: SpockSingle BlipAftermathsEuropa Hymn • "Pinking" (Christoffer Berg Remix)
Official releases