Avicii‘s father, Klas Bergling, spoke at IMS Ibiza yesterday (May 23). Bergling was interviewed by BBC Radio 1‘s Pete Tong about the importance of recognizing the early signs of deteriorating mental health and depression for artists and creatives working in the music industry and about different means of treatment. The conversation largely focused on the initiatives and mission of the newly formed Tim Bergling Foundation, which was created by the late Swedish superstar’s family in the wake of his untimely passing in April of 2018.
In the interview, Bergling dives into what he believes the contributing factors were in the deterioration of his son’s mental health, citing Avicii’s famously relentless touring itinerary, anxiety, depression, lack of sleep, and alcohol dependency. Bergling expressed concern for his son’s well being many times in the years leading up to his passing, though Bergling concedes that even with the full support of Avicii’s team, friends and family, and professional counsel, his attempts to intervene often fell short of making a real impact.
“It’s not many jobs that you can drink while you work, or you’re allowed to. If you start drinking at your job, your manager is supposed to take care of you quickly,” says Bergling. “Life as a DJ and travels where you don’t get any rest between, you travel a lot, you sleep less. The pressure is great depending on the individual, some people handle it perfectly, others don’t.”
The Tim Bergling Foundation was created earlier this year in memory of Avicii, intended to focus on causes near to the “Wake Me Up” star’s heart. Funded solely from the estate left by Avicii, the foundation seeks to educate people on the issues surrounding suicide and mental health, combating climate change, and protecting endangered species.