Local group does its bit for mental health with music project
Local group's latest tracks aim to raise awareness and promote acceptance of mental health disorders
Twelve years ago, local singer-producer Eugene Yip tried to take his own life.
Friends who found him passed out in his room after he overdosed on pills rushed him to hospital, where he got his stomach pumped.
A final-year university student in the US at the time, he did not realise he was actually suffering from major depression and anxiety. He knew only that he felt extremely alone and was afraid to seek help.
Now, the 38-year-old member of local a capella group MICapella is on a mission to help, through music, others experiencing something similar.
He has lent his vocals to the latest release from 3am Music Collective, a group of about 30 local musicians and crew, and is featured in the track Space Inside.
The collection comprises 10 original songs about the mental illness journey. It aims to raise awareness and promote acceptance of mental health disorders.
On Sept 27 at 8pm, 3am Music Collective will be performing the tracks - now available on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube - at virtual concert Beyond The Label Fest 2020, a campaign by the National Council of Social Service to advocate for the acceptance and inclusion of persons with mental health conditions in society.
Mr Yip told The New Paper: "Everybody needs to be aware of what they are going through. I felt very lonely but it wasn't because I didn't have friends, I just didn't know what I was going through and it festered.
"Through therapy and medication, I got better. I don't take anti-depressants anymore, but music, meditation and mindfulness have really helped me over the years."
He hopes this project can break down taboos surrounding mental health disorders, and says music can be a powerful medium to pass on the message.
Another member of 3am Music Collective, lyricist Lee Ying Wen, contributed the lyrics to the song Shine.
The 37-year-old was diagnosed with anxiety and mild depression at 22, but her condition spiralled further when she got hit by a car three years ago along a zebra crossing while cycling home.
The accident left a large scar which covers about half of her right upper thigh. Flashbacks of the episode crippled her with post-traumatic stress disorder, where she would experience bouts of anger and anxiety in the middle of the night.
Ms Lee told TNP: "My body felt physically weaker after the accident, and it was a big blow because I am usually sporty and active. I sought solace in writing, and it helped me to manage my feelings."
Her participation in 3am Music Collective's project also helped her in articulating her emotions.
"Shine has a positive and aspirational tone to it. It's a reminder that having a mental health issue is something you can get better with," she added.
Samaritans of Singapore: 1800-221-4444
Singapore Association for Mental Health: 1800-283-7019
Institute of Mental Health helpline: 6389-2222
Care Corner Counselling Centre (Mandarin): 1800-353-5800
Tinkle Friend: 1800-274-4788