Husband Uses His Wife's Cancer Nightmare to Make Music for Charity

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After his wife narrowly survived stage 3 breast cancer, Anthony Brownrigg is embarking on a special music album based around all the good and bad times they faced, and is seeking to give all rights to the album to a national cancer charity by February 2014.

In early 2010, Maegan Brownrigg and her husband Anthony noticed something prophetically disturbing.

"She asked me to look at this rough area over her left breast and tell me what I thought," said Anthony.

That was the beginning of a three year ordeal that spanned severe chemotherapy, intense radiation, blood clots, MRSA infections, and a host of other complications that unfortunately are all too common with breast cancer. It was stage 3b, four lymph nodes, inflammatory, a 5cm tumor, and non responsive to hormone treatments.

The odds were stacked strongly against her, but after three years, a double mastectomy, cardio toxicity complications, and intense reconstruction, Maegan had beaten the odds. She had also managed to garner a "complete response" notation on her records.

Now three years late, Anthony Brownrigg, a Dallas based filmmaker and composer, has embarked on a mission to create a music album entitled "Battlescars" with each original song highlighting one of the elements of their ordeal. And instead of selling the album himself, plans on giving the rights to the album outright to a national cancer charity.

"Frankly I'm not a charity, I'd be horrible handling that," said Brownrigg "I would much rather find an organization that can just take the rights, and sell it, or give it away themselves to raise money or awareness."

The project began when Anthony, already in a band called Savage Gypsy, was feeling deeply depressed at the outlook during the middle of their ordeal. He took to writing a single song "Maybe," a personal song of him coming to grips with the possibility that his beloved wife might not make it.

"I wrote, recorded, and even shot the music video for it in one night" said Brownrigg. "It's one thing to look at cancer from the outside and say oh, that's really sad. But it's another when you're in the thick of it. Coming to grips with things like that are highly difficult."

Having already completed several songs spanning from dance tunes, to dark ballads, and more in production, Brownrigg has not only been accepting other musicians willing to donate time in the studio, but also support via the web by way of a funding campaign.

"No matter what we wind up getting, it's all going to this. It's not only hard for those going through cancer, but also the friends and loved ones, that wish they could do more than just watch it unfold. A lot of folks don't make it, we almost didn't. But thankfully, now my wife has a story that can be shared, and maybe give some others out there going through the same thing, some hope."

The album will be less genre specific according to Brownrigg, and more about a single theme about the ordeal of the journey. But not all the songs pertain to the cancer itself as Brownrigg is also working on a song about Maegan's experience with Vicodin, and Ambien, (a sleep aid) entitled "Little Green Men," a tribute to the hallucinatory crowd that would gather in her bedroom.

"In retrospect, some of our experiences were actually funny. Like the day her hair blew off her head during a strong breeze, directly into my face, like a cotton candy machine. We both shaved our heads that day, but we couldn't stop laughing."

Brownrigg is also seeking out other musicians, or artists that might have their own personal experiences, and songs that might want to be part of the album.

"You get bitter. You get angry. You don't really want to hear songs about stay the course, or you can do it, or fight all the time. Those songs are nice, but not when you're in intensive care, wondering if you'll survive the night. You get that "easy for you to say" attitude. it's then you start to realize that you've become part of a special club."

"A club where no one wants to be a member. "

The album is currently in production, and due to be completed February, 2014.

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Anthony Brownrigg

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