Music as a healing hand, Kyle Lionhart takes on Byron Bay to discuss sustaining wellbeing with music
04.06.2021

Music as a healing hand, Kyle Lionhart takes on Byron Bay to discuss sustaining wellbeing with music

Words by Riya Kiran

The brand-new Byron Music Festival will be drawing back the curtains to create important industry conversations.

Byron Bay has a brand new festival coming to town, boasting a fully local lineup headlined by Kyle Lionhart, Wolfmother and Hayley Mary (previously lead singer of The Jezabels).

Byron Music Festival, a first of its kind local music festival will be set across three days (18th June to 20th) alongside performances will also hold panel discussions conversing important topics.

Folk and soul singer/songwriter Kyle Lionhart holds one of the most incredible voices in the Australian music scene. His most recent album Too Young, released in 2019 assembles 12 heart melting tracks, showcasing the boundless capabilities of his undeniable talent. From busking on the beaches of his hometown, Byron Bay since 2012, Kyle has honed his craft and become an integral part of the local music scene.

In June, Kyle will take on the Byron Music Festival discussing the idea of achieving wellbeing through music, reflecting on his own journey through the industry.

“Music, when I first started out was a catalyst to getting out of my depression. But the flip side of is that music as a lifestyle, being a touring musician and simply being within the industry is pretty traumatic and hard on your mental health,” shares Kyle.

Kyle first began his ventures as an artist at 19 looking towards music as an escape, however found himself feeling trapped by the very thing he loved.

“Music sent me on a journey to try and find how to look after myself and find that wellness, whilst doing something I loved.

“Because what was the point of doing something I loved so much, yet feeling guilty for it because I wasn’t completely happy and satisfied?

“I had to re-shift my mind into this wasn’t just about me, this is about others too.”

In the past year, COVID-19 has kicked off massive discussions about mental health, as everyone began to feel the tightening pressure of the pandemic and lockdowns that were to follow. Australians are all too familiar with this feeling and as Victorians enter another lockdown it’s important we make our mental health a priority, finding appropriate avenues for help.

“COVID has kind of shifted everyone, while some people have dealt with it well, majority of us have really suffered.

“We’re social beings, we need to be with each other. All the social distancing and the communication through screens and social media is where we begin to loose each other.

“But music, just like any form of art, helps people just get out those emotions, and rekindle that human connection.”

The Bryon Music Festival aims to create opportunities between artists with a message, industry professionals and consumers of music to have an open discussion about our wellbeing and its interconnectedness with music.

“Music that is created and not shared with the world is almost a selfish act, because you don’t realize what that art could do for somebody else.”

“It’s sharing a mutual feeling or emotion that somebody can connect with, so they don’t feel as lonely, or as secluded in their own world.

“The suffering I was writing about, it was really, really hard for me to build up the courage to release it for other people to listen to it. But that was also what connected with my fans the most! I’ve now found this holistic approach to music, realising that it’s more of a connection.

“It’s not about just the artist, it’s about everybody that’s ever supported, listened to or had a moment where they feel connected to what that artist is giving to the world,” states Kyle.

Held at Byron Community Centre on Sunday 20 June, Kyle in company with other local industry representatives and artists will share their stories and insights with the wider community.

“Everybody has their own journey, all I can do is be open and as vulnerable as I possibly can about what I’ve gone through.

“Hearing other people talk about their journey and their perspective is what helps me feel less alone in mine.”

This panel alongside the other discussions BMF has lined up, will offer a unique chance to gain the perspective of other professionals, and truly draw back the curtain of the industry.

Tickets are on sale now via www.byronmusicfestival.com.au along with the full program and speakers list.