herald

Thursday 14 December 2017

Suicide survivor inspires rockers

A DUBLIN rock band, who are organising a concert for suicide charity Pieta House, were inspired by a man who survived after jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge.

The group, Friends of Emmet, who have members in the US, Canada and Ireland, are behind A Night For Pieta House - a gig scheduled for next month that will bring together a host of Irish music talent including Blink, In Tua Nua along with a "very big" secret name.

The rockers have been together for three years and bass player Keith Geraghty explained to the Herald how the story of Kevin Hines - and working with him - inspired the band.

Mr Hines is one of just 34 people who have survived jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge since in opened in 1937.

His story was told in the documentary The Bridge, a 2006 American film that documents suicides from the structure.

"We were writing songs over the internet and I was sending music to Mark [Leddy, the band's singer] and he couldn't put words to it.

"Then he saw The Bridge, the Eric Steele film. Kevin Hines is interviewed in it. Mark put pen to paper and wrote Coming Apart," Keith explained.

Keith then used the internet to track down Kevin, who agreed to be featured in the video.

It was hugely successful and eventually young people began to get in touch with Friends of Emmet, asking if they could make videos for the song.

"There were students asking if they could make their own videos and it became part of the YANA [You Are Not Alone] project," Keith explained.

unsigned

Friends of Emmet's Coming Apart has been featured on a range of television shows including Hollyoaks and Jersey Shore.

The band's music has also featured no less than six times on EastEnders, though the band is unsigned and self-managed.

Keith has suffered from depression and has also considered suicide himself.

"I've suffered from depression, music got me out of that," he said.

His is also advocating for awareness classes for all transition year pupils.

hnews@herald.ie

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