It's worth taking a few minutes to read The Observer piece on Brian Harvey and mental health in the music industry, even although it's not an easy read:
Harvey also talks about how difficult he finds life at Christmas. East 17’s biggest hit was Stay Another Day, which continues to be played heavily during the festive period to this day.Naturally, the people who are busy raking off all the cash and their representatives are quick to stress that they're doing things:
Harvey, who does not receive any royalties for the song, says: “We sold 18 million records and the frustrating thing for me is that I have to sit there every Christmas and listen to myself while I don’t even have the money for a Christmas dinner.
“I am sitting here eating a cold chicken burger on Christmas Day. You have got this number one record … I am just rattling around in a cold house with no food, on my own, with my record being played – but you are just a no one.”
In a statement, the BPI said: “Mental health problems sadly affect people in all walks of life, including those in the creative community. Fortunately, there is greater awareness of what can be done to help now, and one area we are looking to develop is our work with Help Musicians UK – a wonderful charity that reaches out to artists in need of support across a range of issues, including mental health.”In other words: "Hey, look, it's not just musicians who get depression, you know, so... anyway, there's a charity."
The Observer's Daniel Boffey deftly deflated this:
The British Phonographic Industry, which represents the UK music industry, said it supported a mental health charity called Help Musicians UK, although not financially.Let's just repeat that:
although not financiallyIt's not clear exactly what the support the music industry is providing for the charity; its main contribution seems to be providing lots of cases for them to work through.
Not financially. All the BPI companies exist to do is make money, and they're not even prepared to open the chest to help clear up their mess.