Midnight Organ Fight - A Tribute to Scott Hutchison!

I was shook to read news about Frightened Rabbit singer Scott Hutchison, despite everyone's best hopes the story has finally played out and our worst fears have been realised. I've always found it strange to see friends and strangers lament the passing of a musician or celebrity, that personal response to a strangers passing but today's news has really stung me. To read the comments and posts by friends across the internet has been comforting and enlightening about my own experiences and those of so many others thanks to him. I guess today has been about showing love to Scott and the band, the music they have made and trying to find some comfort in it all. 

My journey with Freightened Rabbit started almost 10 years ago when I sat listening to Midnight Organ Fight, crying in my friends room over an ex girlfriend. Somehow their music captured the heartache I felt at the time but also acted as a map to finding some happiness again. This was to be short lived as 6 months later a helicopter crash claimed the lives of 16 men including my friend Moose who had helped me through those difficult times. The next year was spent listening to Midnight Organ Fight, just as we'd done in his room except this time I wasn't up set over an ex. I didn't realise but when you soundtrack heartbreak those songs become a part of your soul and become something more, a source of comfort, hope, sadness and strength sometimes all rolled into one. When I listened to that album it felt like my friend was with me still and a year later I got some of the lyrics from 'Good Arms vs Bad Arms' tattooed along with a design in tribute to my Moose. Even now that tattoo and those words bring me comfort when life is shit.

I was lucky enough to meet Scott when he performed alone at Snafu a few years ago and spoke to him about his songs and the impact they'd had on me and how they helped me through those difficult times. As a mark of his gratitude he dedicated 'Good Arms' to Moose and I got to share a moment with him. The more music the band released the more I came to realise many of his songs dealt with the topic of depression and Scott has been so great at reaching out to fans and opening up the conversation around it. It seems like for so many of us his songs and his experiences helped us through our own dark and difficult times and yet he couldn't find that strength for himself. 

The years since that gig were filled with highs and lows for me, a brush with depression resulted in seeking advice and counselling to help me deal with some of the worst bits, and it did help but seeking that help felt like an impossible task at the time. I had to reach a real low point before I asked for help and the reality is I was lucky, I had people who could help me. For so many I think they feel helpless and useless and the spiral just continues. And despite the best efforts of those around you I think there's still only one person who can start that process for seeking help and trying to recover, if its possible to recover. With all the goodwill and support in the world, it can still sometimes just not be enough. I don't doubt for a minute that had my own struggles continued then my life could have gone very differently. And as many know that feeling, that pain is only ever a few moments away and were never really sure when the next thing is gonna hit, when the next low will come or what will trigger it. 

For Scott to not see any other way out is truly heartbreaking. I tried to write something about it last night but the best I could come up with was to hope for hope, for his friends and family. For now his suffering has ended and I now join the thousands of Frightened Rabbit fans who are lamenting his loss and hoping to send some comfort to those he's left behind. For everyone else we have an incredible legacy, one that shows the very best from some of the worst times a person can have. I'll be forever grateful to him and his music for the comfort and strength its given me and I'm glad I had a chance to tell him that. Although I wish I was writing this under different circumstances that's it, life is tough. For anyone reading and lamenting, be strong, do your best and keep on. 

If you're looking for help or advice regarding depression or feelings of sadness then you can contact the Samaritans on 116 123, it can be difficult to open up but sometimes a strangers voice can provide incredible support. 

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