TWO Old Bar Public School mates reunited to make a music video with a powerful message.
During university actor Jye Whatson and musician Luke Ligtenberg of band The Swamp Stompers dealt with the tragic loss of a friend to suicide.
The song, All My Loving, was written about depression and suicide – a topic Luke wants young people to talk about.
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“My goal is to deliver a strong message to anyone suffering from a mental illness,” Luke said.
“I’ve had three friends take their own life in the last few years. They were all young, good looking people who seemed to be very happy.
It has taught me that beautiful people can hide mental illness dangerously well. Please, please talk about it.Luke Ligtenberg
After finishing recording All My Loving at Music Farm Studios in Byron Bay Luke called Jye asking if he wanted to be in the music video.
“He was keen, though I had to buy him a couple beers and some KFC,” Luke said.
The pair has been friends since primary school and also attended Taree High School together.
Luke said he was impressed with the acting skills Jye “had learnt and mastered”.
Jye, who also has a teaching degree, decided to pursue acting after going on student exchange in America.
“I met a few mates who were filmmakers and we would just muck around having some fun filming little short films,” Jye said.
Jye then went on to the New York Film Academy inside Roadshow Studios on the Gold Coast. He said getting to express creativity in his job is “the best way to live life”.
Jye said it was “awesome” getting to work with Luke and the rest of The Swamp Stompers.
“All those boys are absolute legends and just so easy going,” he said.
“They had a clear vision and made some beautiful stuff as a result. Working with Luke was fun, but still very strange by working extremely professional together.”
Jye said that in being an actor there is a certain element of being “brave” and facing your fears.
“There is that underlying thing you know you’re afraid of facing, but facing those fears just leads to peace of mind and happiness,” he said.
Jye was thankful for the opportunity and thanked the band for making a beautiful song that is raising awareness for mental health.
“Hopefully this inspires people to support each other,” he added.
See The Swamp Stompers
The Swamp Stompers will perform at Wingham Akoostik Music Festival on October 19 at 8pm.