“I see the love in her eyes, I see the feelin’, the freedom is granted as soon as the damage of Vodka arrive”

Kendrick Lamar, Swimming Pools (Drank)

The Harmony Workshops utilises the music and lives of artists who have experienced or written about the co-occurring illness of poor mental health and alcohol or drugs misuse. Through their performance, music & lyrics, artists such as Amy Winehouse, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, Macklemore and many more, give participants a unique understanding of the condition.

A study by the UK Dept. of Health suggests 75% of users of drug services and 85% of users of alcohol services have experienced mental health problems. (Weaver et al, 2002)

Mental health lies at the core of substance misuse – dual diagnosis – for many people. Because of this, many people unknowingly use drugs and alcohol to self-medicate. Underlying mental health issues urgently need to be addressed in the early stages to prevent the onset of substance misuse or prevent relapse.

The Harmony Workshops address issues such as mental health and early childhood trauma through the biopsychosocial (biological, psychological, social factors), epidemiological (patterns, causes, effects) and Motivational Interviewing (MI) for Addictive Behaviours with evidence-based music therapy for substance misuse.


Relevant music videos from artists that deal with the underlying root causes and impacts of substance misuse are used as a springboard to understand the biopsychosocial and epidemiological models of addiction and its impacts on basic human needs. Drug & alcohol misuse is explored, discussed and understood through

  • Music performance videos
  • Lyrical analysis of songs
  • Individual creative writing of songs, raps or poems
  • Using music as a therapeutic tool