Scottish Buskers Perform Live Request Show Using Emoji’s Picked by Public on World Mental Health Day

Posted by See Me, 10 October 2018

A pair of buskers are performing a unique set on one of Scotland’s busiest streets today, letting passers-by create the playlist based on emoji’s which represent how they feel.

The event is happening as part of World Mental Health Day, to encourage young people to speak about how they’re feeling.

Musicians have joined together with us, to bring our latest campaign Feels FM to life and to encourage young people to find new ways to talk about mental health stigma and discrimination using music.

Heather Richardson and Becky Campbell will perform on Buchanan Street at 4.30pm using an emoji voting poster. Spectators will be able to pick the emoji that represents how they are feeling and then songs will be played to match this.

The performance will also be streamed live on our social media channels for people to vote on what emoji they’d like to hear songs for next, and start conversations with one another about mental health online.

To help young people speak about how they are feeling we are currently running our Feels FM campaign. As part of the campaign we've created an emoji powered jukebox designed to help young people express their feelings, use music as a positive coping strategy and share their views on what makes it difficult for young people to talk about their mental health.  The campaign is part of the Year of Young People.

Earlier this year we surveyed 1455 young people aged 12-26 on mental health. We found that only 26% of young people would tell someone if they were finding it difficult to cope, compared to 67% who would tell someone if they were feeling physically unwell.

We also found that 62% also said they think that people are treated unfairly if they say that have a mental health condition, and only 31% would tell someone if they had a diagnosis.

Kirsty Watters struggled with her mental health when she was growing up, but didn’t find it easy to talk to people.

She said: “I wasn’t able to recognise that I was struggling with my mental health and I don’t think people around me where able to recognise it, so I struggled for 2 years before a friend said to me ‘I think you might be depressed’.”

Kirsty eventually recognised that she had depression, and found ways to help manage it. She also used music as a positive coping strategy when she was feeling down.

She added: “I think music is universal and so is mental health so it’s a really good thing to put together. We all love music and we all have mental health so it’s good to relate those things. I don’t think there’s anyone who hasn’t used music when they’re having a bad day. It’s such a common coping strategy.”

Calum Irving, See Me director said: “Everyone has feelings, everyone has mental health, and most people listen to music. We want to bring this together, so young people can express how they are feeling without worrying about stigma, and find songs to help if they’re struggling.”

You can tune into the performance and share your emoji’s live at 4.30pm here

Visit Feels FM

As part of the Year of Young People we have created the world's first emoji-powered jukebox for mental health. Feels FM is an online platform to help young people express their feelings, use music as a positive coping strategy, and find new ways to talk about mental health stigma and discrimination. 

Visit Feels FM