Song a rallying cry for health
IT'S time to shine a light on men's mental health.
That's the idea behind Queensland Music Festival's (QMF) new charity single, Help is on its Way.
With suicide the most common cause of death in males aged 15-45 years and people living in regional areas at a significantly higher risk, some of Australia's best-loved artists have joined together to sing out for mental health awareness.
Led by ARIA Hall of Fame inductee Glen Shorrock and joined Busby Marou, the McClymonts and Travis Collins, Queensland Music Festival is taking a Help is on its Way concert to regional Queensland.
Towns on the tour include Moranbah, Barcaldine, Chinchilla, Hughenden, Birdsville, Cunnamulla, Beaudesert, Townsville and Brisbane.
Help is on its Way was originally written by the legendary Glen Shorrock of Little River Band in 1973.
At the time, Mr Shorrock was going through a period of change with the breakdown of his band, Axiom and of his first marriage.
Help is on its Way, with its lyrics about exploring "the inner man (and) the strength that lies within”, as Mr Shorrock puts it, resonated with a lot of people over the years.
One such person was QMF artistic director Katie Noonan, who approached Mr Shorrock to ask if he would lend his song to the festival's cause.
"She (Katie) said 'We think your song Help is on its Way sends the right message',” Mr Shorrock said.
"I was thrilled about that.
"I'm just thrilled that's it now being used therapeutically, shall I say. The lyrics suit the cause.”
For Mr Shorrock, mental health is just as important as physical health, especially in "these modern times”.
"It can get people down - the rate of change that comes upon us all the time is sometimes quite difficult to handle, not just for younger people but for older people.”
Mr Shorrock said he was looking forward to his adventure in regional Queensland.
"I do love getting out there and that's going to be interesting,” he said. " It is a journey of discovery for me as well.”
QMF artistic director Katie Noonan said Help is on its Way was an example of the role music could play in giving awareness to important issues in society.
"Through collective experiences like singing together, we can bring communities closer, building empathy, friendship and a shared understanding and support for one another,” Ms Noonan said.
All artists who recorded Help is on its Way and who are touring with QMF are giving their time for free and donating their proceeds from the recording of the song.
- Help is on its Way will raise money for Roses in the Ocean, an organisation dedicated to suicide prevention.