Avicii’s father calls for more mental health support for up-and-coming artists

“A serious discussion couldn’t hurt”

Avicii’s father Tim Klas has opened up about the death of his son, and called for more mental health support for new artists – saying fame and fortune are “a very dangerous combination”

Avicii, real name Tim Bergling, took his own life in 2018. In a statement released at the time, his family said: “Tim was not made for the business machine he found himself in; he was a sensitive guy who loved his fans but shunned the spotlight.”

Now in a new interview with The Times, his father has suggested the music industry needs to do more to support artists with their mental health.

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“It’s fame and fortune, and that’s a very dangerous combination,” Klas said. “When you have an up-and-coming artist there should be some structure.”

While he doesn’t know the specifics of what needs to be done, he believes “a serious discussion couldn’t hurt”.

Elsewhere in the interview, Klas shared the importance of calling Avicii’s death a suicide, saying “I think you should call things what they are,” before he went on to say that no one is responsible for the death. “Nobody is to blame. If we should blame anybody, we should start with me.”

Following his death, Avicii’s family set up a mental health foundation in his honour. The Tim Bergling Foundation, will “initially focus on supporting people and organisations working in the field of mental illness and suicide prevention.”

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Speaking to NME earlier this year, fellow EDM trailblazers Swedish House Mafia spoke about the dangers of sudden success. “There is a lot of pressure mentally when you’re coming up,” said Steve Angello. “It’s a mind-fuck. When you rise to the top very fast, it can be really dangerous.”

Echoing the sentiments of Avicii’s father, Axwell said: “Everything is moving so fast and you have to keep everything on point. When we started out, all we needed to worry about was vinyl and maybe a website. But now you need to be number one on TikTok, Instagram, have your own crypto coin and a six-pack. There’s so much going on and it all moves so quickly. Unless you can slow down the pace of the world, I don’t know what can be done.”

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