Ottawa city councillor releases sea shanty to help boost spirits amid pandemic

An Ottawa city councillor is getting in on a recent online trend by releasing his own sea shanty, as a means to help boost spirits amid the pandemic. 

Orléans Ward representative Matthew Luloff, his band Hearts & Mines, along with special guests Stacy DuBois, Steffany Venneri and Sarah Alena covered a traditional sea shanty from the 1860's.

The councillor feels residents are currently recycling grief when setbacks related to the pandemic occur. 

"I think, in the very beginning, I found the extra time to really work hard at my priorities was helpful, but after a while you really start to miss that human connection," Luloff explains. 

He adds, he has always used music as a coping mechanism, including during his military service overseas. 

"When I deployed overseas in 2008, I kept a journal and I wrote songs in it," the councillor says. "When I came back home at the end of 2008, and released from the military with PTSD in 2009, I went back and looked at those lyrics I wrote, and started writing the music to them." 

Luloff is also encouraging people to carve time for themselves for the benefit of their mental health, as he says it can eat them up without it.

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