One of the greatest struggles that the general public face these days is that of mental health and anxiety. With countless ways suggested to help combat these issues, music is rarely put forward as a helpful way to face them, and is often overlooked. Now, however, music producer Jon Reichardt is using music to tackle these issues, and to help improve mindfulness and general wellbeing.
From working with big names in the Aussie music industry, such as Drapht, Bliss N Eso, 360, and the Hilltop hoods, just to name a few, one would think that ambient electronica would be the last genre one would expect to find Jon Reichardt. Thankfully though, he has pleasantly surprised all of us.
In 2008, Jon fell victim to the growing crisis of mental health issues in Australia, and after eight years of trying to find ways to cope with anxiety and depression, he began a musical project called Zoenmind, who have just released an album that is designed to enhance the listener’s mental, emotional & spiritual health.
Focusing strongly on the concept of mindfulness, which Zoenmind’s blog notes is described as “maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment,” Jon has managed to create an album that is determined to increase mindfulness and aid those in need.
“For Zoenmind’s debut album, Autumn Bells,” Jon says. “My focus was to write and produce/co-produce instrumental music that could facilitate mindfulness. I set about creating songs that could help the listener slow down, relax and ground themselves enough to do colouring books, meditate or simply allow the sounds to wash over them as they become mindful of the music itself. I drew from production influences as diverse as Drake and contemporary religious/spiritual worship music, and it was fun.”
The beauty of this project is that it serves two purposes. While it can be used to aid those who suffer from mental health issues by increasing mindfulness and promoting positive thoughts and feelings, it also stands alone as a brilliant musical art piece; a fresh slice of ambient electronica.
Give Autumn Bells a listen below, and be sure to check out more about Zoenmind at the project’s website.