Sure, Breast Cancer Awareness Month (that's October) has come and gone, but that's no reason to not continue to bring attention to fighting the devastating disease, which killed an estimated 39,840 women in the U.S. alone this year. Just ask Toby Rand, lead singer of Aussie fourpiece Juke Kartel, who recently sat down with Usmagazine.com to discuss "Brightest Star," their response to the news that drummer Jay Pinfold's mother was diagnosed with the disease — and survived.
A portion of the proceeds of the uplifting track, which can be downloaded here, goes to the Susan G. Komen For The Cure foundation of Los Angeles County.
"The power of this song is in its creation, the band's real life experience and in its delivery by the amazing Juke Kartel. We could not be more proud to be associated with this fine group of young men who are giving of their talent, time and treasure. This song is the perfect vehicle, in a language we all understand, to deliver the message: survival is possible, the cure is at hand," says the Foundation's Deb Anthony. Now, here's what Toby had to say.
"To see the video and for more on the guys, visit: jukekartel.com.
UsMagazine.com: Tell Us about the song!
Toby Rand: "Brightest Star" was written for our drummers mum who had been diagnosed with cancer last year. And one of the things we wanted to do was make a legacy for her, if she did happen to pass from the disease. And we wanted to create a song and she was like "oh that'd be amazing" so I got in contact with her. She lived in New Zealand and basically I was over here and so was her son, and we just tried to inspire her with the music so it formed a relationship and created a story and then put it into this song. And it's just one of those songs that we played, when we went back to Australia we played it every now and again and people were like "this has got great meaning, you know you should do something with it."
US: Right, that's awesome. Whose idea was it?
TR: I think the song idea came from me, watching our drummer. He's an interesting drummer because he's not very good at confrontation and he's not very good at emotion. As most drummers tend to be! But basically I took on a role with him, because his mum was so far away and that was really killing him — the torment that she was going through. So I took on that role, and I created the song through that. And during the recording we had 3 survivors come in and sing on the track.
US: Wow — that's great!
TR: Then in the video we invited like 30 to 40 women to come down with their kids and we played a live performance piece, like one of those MTV session where everyone kinda just comes and sits around and it's a really relaxed kind of atmosphere. And then we got them to kind of rise and join in the band.
US: Now is this song on your new record?
TR: No it's not actually — it's a separate single. We already had our record out which is called "Levolution". And we just released this separately.
US: Are you planning on touring with anyone?
TR: We've recently been touring with Slash — we've done some shows with him and that kind of wrapped up only a couple of weeks ago so we're hitting our own kind of tour.
US: Well, best of lucky! It really is such a great cause that you guys are working for.
TR: Thank you! Every single person that's been involved and helped us get this music out has had someone affected. And you know my auntie is a survivor and luckily our drummers mum, I heard from her yesterday and she said how great she was and how her hair is growing back. She goes, "I just love this song". And this music can connect people together as well and it's just been a pleasure.
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