There’s been a strong, growing effort in the music industry to give musicians mental healthcare because too many young, troubled artists have passed away. There have been people concerned enough that they have formed their own organizations to try and help. Now Rolling Stone is taking a new look at how musicians are trying to help each other with their mental health issues and help raise mental health awareness as well.
“Like Never Before”
As this report explains, musicians and industry people have been coming forward to help other artists with their mental health “like never before,” and indeed, there has probably been more awareness of the importance of mental health in the music industry than ever. The reason for the awareness is not just because there’s more global awareness in general, but also because we’ve lost so many great artists already.
So much focus in the past has been on addiction, but as this story explains, addiction and mental illness “are closely linked, and about half of people who suffer from mental illness will also experience substance abuse during their lives.”
With a new music business in full swing where artists have to work harder than ever to make a dime, overwork has been contributing to a lot of mental health issues in the music business, especially with people who work on road crews. To make money, many musicians have to tour like crazy, and the grind has been hard for many to deal with.
One mental health advocate says, “We’ve hit a tipping point where the people who work in our industry, artists as well as crew…people are working twice as hard to stay in the same spot they used to. The pressures are ratcheted up.”
This story pointed to “stressors,” or triggers that musicians and their employees can suffer, and one of the biggest is financial instability. Not only is that instability a given in this profession, but the hours are also long and grueling.
There’s also the artistic temperament that is often hard to deal with/ As another mental health expert explains, right brained people, people who are often more creative, can feel the stress and the right side of the brain is also the side that “creates the most negative emotions.”
To hopefully prevent more tragedies in the future, to prevent the loss of more unreplaceable talent like Mac Miller, Chester Bennington, and Chris Cornell, many are trying to create support systems that can help musicians and the people on their staff in need.
As one source explains, “We’ve lost so many artists that industry leaders are finally paying attention. They’re realizing; we can’t have all our artists die.”
One group that helps musicians and music professionals when they need help is called Backline, which initially grew out of a conference call where a number of music professionals tried to figure out what to do about so many people who are suffering.
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