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Before former WWE star Ashley Massaro tragically took her own life in May, she agreed to appear in a video for a song about suicide prevention written by her colleague at a Long Island radio station.
“Ashley was very enthusiastic about the song,” Brian Orlando, the morning show host and assistant program director at 94.3 The Shark, tells The Post. Massaro hosted a weekly show on the rock station. “She heard it after it was recorded and loved it. She even agreed to be in the video.”
Orlando was inspired to write the tune, “Choose Song,” after his music hero, Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, hung himself in 2017.
“It’s a mellow anthem. It’s encouraging,” he says. “The idea of the song is that with music, you are never alone.”
Last July, he took the song to Brandon B. Brown, the frontman for Long Island-based band Weatus, which had a hit in 2000 with the youth angst anthem “Teenage Dirtbag.”
According to Orlando, Brown loved it and reached out to members of popular ’90s alt-rock bands Sponge and Candlebox.
“I showed it to Brendan, and he quickly recorded a demo and sent it to Vinny [Dombrowksi] from Sponge and Kevin [Martin] from Candlebox. They flipped out when they heard the song.”
The trio recorded a version together but plans to release it hit a roadblock after Massaro’s death at age 39.
“Obviously, when she passed away, I felt personally like my world crashed and wasn’t sure I wanted to hear the song again. We decided to scrap the entire idea. I didn’t feel comfortable releasing the song. We’re all slowly realizing it’s needed more than now than ever.”
On Saturday, the band Sponge with perform “Choose Song” at Orlando’s charity birthday bash at Momo’s Too in Bayport, LI.
All proceeds from the event will go to the nonprofit Angela’s House, which helps medically fragile children.
“We hope to show how depression can affect everyone,” he says.