My friend since the 80s, Margaret Konopacki, launched the BIRDSONG NEW MUSIC FOUNDATION a few years ago to help remove the stigma associated with those living with a mental health issue, specifically supporting Canadian songwriters struggling with mental health diagnoses while trying to forge a career in the music industry. Her beloved musician son, David Martin (pictured below), passed away several years ago without receiving the necessary help or understanding from the doctors and other medical professionals from whom he sought help. After working with songwriters from across the country, she’s about to launch Birdsong’s first album, the double CD BIRDSONG: FIRST FLIGHT 101 on February 14th, Valentine’s Day – the international day of love. The album features 21 original songs composed by 12 unique musicians, many of whom claim that music saved their life. The music was recorded from Nov. 2017 to Dec. 2022 in Toronto at B Musique Studio’s, in Ottawa at Sound Decisions and in Vancouver at NYG Productions. The singer/songwriters on the album include: Jordan Gow, Paakwasi, Earl Johnson, Dustin Harder (Prairie Soul), Ashley Bell, Thomas Messenger, Allan Kinney, Robin Benedict, Matthew Johnston, Jhmal King, Statia, and David Martin. Margaret is the executive producer and Bryant Didier, Ted Adler & Nygel Asselin are the engineers. “It is the hope of the Foundation that this music will be respected and heard, and that the stigma of having a diagnosis of mental illness including substance use disorder will eventually be eradicated,” says Birdsong Founder Margaret Konopacki (pictured below with David) “it’s about creating hope through music and a village of people who can support each other musically and emotionally. I am watching music heal people, myself included. No mother should go through the trauma of losing their child to mental illness, but my son has directed this creation somehow through me – to have a different medical approach to treating trauma. There is no greater gift at this time than to listen to the incredible music from these Birdsong composers and hear their message and story.” She continues “We’re giving an opportunity to these individuals to work as spokespeople for their illness. Too often people with mental health issues are explained, stigmatized, or spoken for by others, and their feelings of hopelessness and loneliness is eventually what ends their life. Birdsong is a pro-active organization that spreads hope to the discouraged and is paving the way for a new approach to healing as part of a new psychiatric approach in Canada. We are giving the mic and power back to this marginalized, talented group. I wish that a program such as this had been available for David.” The album can be purchased online at: https://birdsong.hearnow.com/ and available on ALL streaming services on Valentine’s Day. All proceeds from sales will be split between the artists, who own the copyright to their songs, and Birdsong New Music Foundation, a registered Canadian charity.
All donations to the Foundation support the creation of new music, videos and live performance opportunities for Birdsong artists. You can donate now here: https://birdsongfoundation.com/products/birdsong-foundation-donationsCharitable registration: 77756 4873RR0001
THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING CANADIAN ARTISTS…AND THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING BIRDSONG.