New Mental Health Foundation, Backline, Forms to Help Musicians and Crew in Distress

October 7, 2019
New Mental Health Foundation, Backline, Forms to Help Musicians and Crew in Distress

A new mental health foundation, Backline, has just launched to raise awareness and provide easy access to mental health resources for performers and professionals in the music industry.

The foundation was formed after the losses of beloved members of the live music scene, namely Jeff Austin and Neal Casal, to suicide.

According to a press release, the project will begin as a “referral-based system, where [mental health] professionals will assess visitors’ needs and lead them to appropriate resources. Backline’s goal is to provide a network of on-demand mental health services available at no (or low) cost for industry professionals, with a focus on addressing the unique challenges and stresses of our space.”

In additional to the online space, Backline will be a backstage resource for performers at events who may find themselves in distress. The organization is teaming with Relix’s Roadie Lounge, to get engaged with artists and staff as soon as possible.

“The Relix Roadie Lounge is honored to be working with Backline to show musicians, techs, crew, production staff, and all the hard working people behind the scenes, that there is always help,” says Josh Rowe, VP of Partnerships and Events at Relix Media Group. “The road can be a lonely place. Together, we hope to give support and a home away from home with Backline.”

Backline co-founder Hilary Gleason adds, “There are wonderful organizations who have been doing great work to support the health and wellness of the music industry. What we saw was a gap in making these resources easily accessible. Mental health treatment is not one-size-fits-all, so it is our hope that by bringing these organizations together in one place, and providing case managers to guide visitors through the resources, we can make it simple to get the help you need.”

Backline supporters include Ben Baruch (11E1even Group), Peter Shapiro (Brooklyn Bowl, LOCKN’) Nadia Prescher (Madison House), Joshua Knight (Paradigm Agency) and Jay Sweet (Newport Folk Festival).

For more information visit