Peter Iwers Takes a Stand Against Bullying, Gothenburg, Sweden – We have all heard about the growing bullying around the world. It’s not a new subject, but over the years has only gotten systemically worse as the years have passed. It has become the forefront of many news stories and conversations as more and more people step into the spotlight and share their stories about being bullied and the horrible effect it’s had on them personally.
As social media came along and is now integrated heavily in most peoples lives today, bullying has taken on an additional name, cyber-bullying. Broadband Search says that 95% of teenagers are connected to the internet and 85% use social media, so it’s no surprise that this affects so many people worldwide. People sitting behind their phones and keyboards have become so disconnected in a world that is so overly connected today, that they have either become the bully or “internet troll” or the victim. Many things that would never be said in person have suddenly become ok to say as long as you can do it online and hide in anonymity or simply because people have lost the ability to filter themselves and fail to realize that whether in person or online, there’s a human being on the other end of the connection who is being put down and even terrorized by another human being.
It’s not an instance that only happens to a particular social class of individuals either, it happens to people across all the spectrum of social classes and is something we all need to take a stand against. Whether it’s happening to you, someone you know, you witness it or see it happening online, it’s time to say enough is enough and take a stand against bullying. One way in which you can do this is by keeping a record of any harmful posts created to harm you or others. You can do things like download instagram stories so that they can be used as evidence if you ever decide to make a claim. Alternatively you could re-share the posts to raise awareness of the issue and take back power.
I am thrilled to bring you this interview with Peter Iwers about his new project called Artists United Against Bullying. Peter Iwers is most notably known for his 20+ years playing bass with the world renowned Swedish metal band In Flames. He’s also been a part of the Gothenburg based rock band Cyhra as well as being part owner in Odd Island Brewing and Restaurant 2112 based in Gothenburg, Sweden.
You wouldn’t think that someone of his stature and notoriety would ever be the victim of bullying, but you would be incorrect. He’s personally been bullied while growing up and as an adult. He’s seen others being bullied and seen the growing cyber-bullying that’s gotten out of hand. In his own words Iwers told me, “I think it’s so important that we bring awareness to the subject and actually make people aware that an action you might not not think of, five seconds later could hurt somebody for life”. It was after a chance meeting with fellow musician, Paulo Mendonca, that he decided to start this project with him to bring awareness to the seriousness of bullying and to take a stand against it.
What would be a better way to start the discussion than through music? Music brings people together, it makes people feel something and is often a healing source for so many people. So Iwers along with Mendonca started writing then brought Jeff Scott Soto, Fredrik Stenberg and Anton Roos into this musical project and have created their first single titled “Hero” that is set to release on August 10, 2018 over multiple platforms.
Along with the music, Peter Iwers also reached out to Seattle music photographer, Neil Lim Sang, to help get the word out and awareness to other musicians to become supporters by lending their voices, their spotlight and joining in with AUAB to bring awareness to the organization. I asked Iwers how he decided to include Lim Sang in the project and he said, ” I talked to Neil and he meets so many people, this is something he’s really touchy about as well and it’s such an important subject for him as well. The plan is to actually bring more musicians into this. Why we do this and people post [photos] with the logo is the same thing, to get more awareness and to get people involved and interested in the project.”
And it certainly has started getting people interested. Through Lim Sang’s work, he’s already gathered support from bands like Great White, Skid Row, Vixen, Faster Pussycat and will continue to grow more support as he interacts with other touring artists. We’ve got a few of the shots below that Neil Lim Sang has captured with their support. You can follow along on his contributions on Instagram: @nlimsang, Twitter: @nlimsang and Facebook: @LimSangPhotography.
Artists United Against Bullying has also teamed up with the organization Picked Last who also champion anti-bullying programs as well as sell a line of clothing that makes donations to anti-bullying programs.
It’s great to see artists using their spotlight to make a difference and to tackle serious subjects that have life altering outcomes. This is just the beginning for Artists United Against Bullying so join in the discussion and make a difference to the people around you. If you are an artist and would like to join in the fight against bullying, contact AUAB today! Follow Artists United Against Bullying on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/artistsunitedagainstbullying.
So down to the interview! Below is the full interview with Peter Iwers talking about the current project, all that he’s been up to since leaving In Flames in 2016 and we even have a sneak teaser of the song “Hero” for all of you to check out! Make sure to purchase “Hero”, the proceeds with be going toward this very vital anti-bullying campaign!
Order on iTunes here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/hero-single/1412420778
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