While the ministry of health recently faced flak after giving questionable advice to those dealing with depression in a post meant to raise awareness for the same, a band of heavy metal musicians have taken it upon themselves to raise awareness about mental illness and suicide.
‘Bloodywood’ comprises of two musicians Jayant Bhadula and Karan Katiyar who collaborated with rapper Rahul Kerr to create their first original composition ‘Jee Veeray’. The song talks about mental illness and is dedicated to those who may be suffering in silence, stigmatized, or even contemplating suicide.
“We as a band have always tried to talk about socially relevant issues. Even though it is our first song, our previous covers also reflect this feeling. 'Ari Ari' which we covered speaks about equality. So when it came to writing our own song, we knew we had to pick a powerful issue,” said lead vocalist Karan Katiyar.
Karan narrated how a friend killing himself in college made them realize that mental illness may not be something that is always visible to the eye.
“This boy was the most happy-go-lucky person, always smiling. But turns out he had been depressed for a long time and no one knew. It really affected us, the fact that it’s so easy to overlook someone with mental illness and the toll concealing the condition may have on the victim.”
Rahul, who was working with Bloodywood on a collaborative basis for the song, added that losing personal heroes like musician Chester Bennington, lead vocalist Linkin Park, to mental disorder was a big reason why he chose to work on the song.
“The worst part is, despite safeguards like the new Mental Health Law in India, or the global conversation around mental health, people still hesitate to talk about it. We hoped that by bringing serious topics such as mental health to mainstream content we can raise awareness and maybe save a life,” Rahul told News18.
According to the musicians, the song which was released last week, has received a flood of good wish and positive review from listeners both in India and abroad.
The band’s Facebook page as well as their personal social media accounts have been receiving a constant stream of people congratulating them and expressing their gratitude to them for talking about the issue.
“Many of our fans have texted us saying that they had been struggling with some form of mental illness and that after listeningto the song, they get hope and may consider seeking therapy. That is just the response we had hoped for,” Karan Katiyar said.
Bloodywood has also collaborated with an NGO called HopeNetwork in giving away 60 free counselling sessions on their YouTube channel to whoever wants them. All 60 sessions were booked within days.
Shout out to Bloodywood for doing this! Dudes are Solid as fuck!— DJ Masquatch (@djmasquatch) July 18, 2018
They have bought 60 1 on 1 sessions for online counseling if you are suffering from depression or mental illness. Check out the video for more info
Bloodywood ("Jee Veerey" ft. Raoul Kerr) https://t.co/4ueDrPrhl6
With the initiative's success, the band hopes to take the campaign of normalizing mental health issues forward. Watch the full video on their YouTube channel.