Passions For Music And Mental Health Intertwine For Soul Singer Be.Be
Outlets that spur creativity can help draw people out of the mental staleness brought upon by recurring daily routines. Music is Brianna Brown’s saving grace. Her stage name is Be.Be, and the soul and R&B singer wants to spread awareness about music’s impact on mental health.
Her career seemed poised for takeoff: She is this year’s Kranzberg Artist-in-Residence and was booking shows in St. Louis and beyond with her band Be.Be & the Neo Souls. Then came the coronavirus, canceling shows and music lessons — her main sources of income.
“I literally just didn't get out of bed for anything for a month. I was still in [university] classes; I took my classes from my bed. I ate in my bed — I was doing everything from my bed because I was just completely devastated,” she said.
But then came the realization that she couldn’t wait for the world to restart.
“It seems like this is just something that's kind of happening, and we don't really know what the end is going to look like, or when that's going to be. So I'm going to have to adjust or I'm going to continue to just be miserable in bed.”
She started by doing the little things, like putting on makeup again.
“I set up a creative corner with a backdrop to take a photo, and eventually I started adding different things to that space so I could kind of work and start just getting in a creative mode again, and it worked.”
She found a sense of normality, and started practicing her craft again. Be.Be switched to offering virtual voice lessons, working on her upcoming “Elements” album and booking gigs.
Be.Be will perform at a virtual concert this Thursday hosted by Provident's Young Professionals Board. The inaugural InstruMENTAL Health concert aims to raise funds to support the nonprofit's mental health programs.
On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Sarah Fenske talked with Be.Be about her music background and her personal thoughts on why it's important to care for your mental health during these challenging times, especially as an artist.
Be.Be is pursuing a degree in psychology from Webster University and previously volunteered for Provident’s after-school program.
How has music helped you during challenging times? Tweet us (@STLonAir), send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or share your thoughts via our St. Louis on the Air Facebook group, and help inform our coverage.
“St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Alex Heuer, Emily Woodbury, Evie Hemphill and Lara Hamdan. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr.