It’s going to be a full-body, multi-sensory good times experience at Toast.
LAVA Presents, The Up Center, and us here at AltDaily have joined forces to bring you what we’re expecting to be a very special evening that not only is filled with great music, but which also celebrates positive mental health self-care.
For LAVA’s Josh Coplon, this is a passion project.
“This is a unique event because you have 100% of everyone involved all behind a common cause that goes far past music,” said Coplon. “There are so many bands, big and small, that are canceling shows due to mental illness. It’s not an issue that can be ignored and this is a great way to bring more attention to a serious issue.”
Along with a fantastic line-up of music — more on that in a minute — there will be:
- $10/10 min chair massages
- A Tactile “Touch Me” Station
- Glow in the Dark Chalk Drawing
- Olfactory Education Station
- Breathing Skills to reduce stress and anxiety
FEEL GOOD, NFK!!
Mental health issues impact one in four of us, or roughly 60,000 people here in Norfolk. We have to be looking out for ourselves — and each other — with proactive self-care. This concert is part of Mentally Healthy Norfolk Month, which you can learn more about here.
Proceeds from the show will go directly to increasing the capacity for The Up Center to respond to the mental health needs in our community — especially for those who face barriers to access.
There are three bands in the line-up:
This concert has special meaning for Pet Name’s Adam Hanson: he lives this issue every day.
“As part of my ‘day job,’ I do intensive in-home counseling with youth and families in the Hampton Roads area,” said Hanson. “Because of that work, I’ve been exposed to just how pervasive issues of mental health are in the local community. The need for community and legislative support for increased mental health services and education can’t be understated.”
Mental health takes a conscious commitment, according to Hanson.
“Good mental health requires regular maintenance, just like physical health,” he said.
You can check the band out here:
When asked why they wanted to be a part of this event, Deathhouse Blues’ lead guitarist Gabriel Perry opened up.
“One of my dear friends committed suicide in 2009 and I’ve never gotten over it, so mental health is an issue of crucial importance to me,” said Perry. “This topic is something that we as a modern society do not discuss. We are more interconnected through binary than ever, yet we haven’t learned to reach out to each other in moments of crisis or great need… I hope a show of this type can begin a more compassionate conversation about how we need to hold each other’s hand.”
The band’s Chris Felan is another musician in the line-up who works in the mental health field professionally. He has been helping to heal people for fifteen years as a Navy Corpsman and as a civilian Psychology Technician for the Army at Ft Eustis.
“One of my responsibilities is to provide suicide prevention training to soldiers as well as triage service members in crisis,” he said. “Since I was a teenager, I have struggled with severe bouts of depression myself. It goes without saying that mental health affects me daily on a professional and personal level. So of course I was excited when I received the news that we are playing a benefit show for mental health awareness.”
Lead vocalist Emma Jane Tracy emphasized that dealing with mental health issues isn’t easy, and none of us can do it alone.
“It’s hard to handle things by yourself but that’s what everybody wants to do,” she said. “Reaching out to others is the absolute hardest shit to do but sometimes you need to.”
Here’s a taste of the band:
It’s rare for anyone not to be personally touched by mental illness, and Bended Light’s Jack Gallagher is no exception.
“It is something that has been a part of my family for years,” he said. “It’s something you should never under estimate or dismiss.”
You can get a taste of Bended Light here:
Toast — my personal favorite hang out in Norfolk — will have positive mental health-minded drink specials and other surprises on hand. The weather is supposed to be perfect. If you’ve never been to Toast on a temperate Hampton Roads evening, it’s a pleasure you shouldn’t deny yourself tomorrow evening.
The show is Friday, October 6, starting at 8pm. For more info, click here.