When Simple Plan singer Pierre Bouvier discovered in 2006 that his 28-year-old brother, Jay, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, the artist turned to songwriting as a method of therapy.

When Simple Plan singer Pierre Bouvier discovered in 2006 that his 28-year-old brother, Jay, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, the artist turned to songwriting as a method of therapy.

"It hit me hard," Bouvier tells Billboard. "There was a chance that he might not make it."

At the time, Simple Plan was writing material for its third self-titled album. And while Bouvier's brother was undergoing chemotherapy, the Canadian rock outfit continued to work on the set, which was released in February on Lava/Atlantic.

From those difficult songwriting sessions came "Save You," a track that expresses "how helpless I felt and how difficult it was to see someone you care about go through something like that," Bouvier says.

Now, as a way to celebrate the recovery of Bouvier's brother, the Simple Plan Foundation is donating net proceeds from digital downloads of "Save You" to various cancer-focused charities. The donation period began Oct. 14 and continues through the end of January.

Fan feedback on "Save You" has been positive. During meet-and-greets at concerts, "there's always somebody that comes up to me and says, 'This song really helped me out, because someone in my family went through the same thing,' " Bouvier says. "People really appreciate it."

"Save You," which appears on Simple Plan's self-titled album, sold 7,000 downloads in the week ending Oct. 19, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The donation effort is a partnership involving Simple Plan, iTunes, Lava/Atlantic and publisher Warner/Chappell Music.

Simple Plan is working on a companion video for "Save You," which will appearances from such cancer survivors as Sharon Osbourne and Barenaked Ladies' Kevin Hearn. "It's a really powerful video that's an image of people getting up and overcoming the whole disease and battle," Bouvier explains.

Meanwhile, Simple Plan is touring across Europe through December. Bouvier says the band will take a short break for Christmas, and then begin writing material for its next album. "We're definitely excited about working on new material and trying out new things," he says. "We don't want to rush it, so we'll just write and when we're ready hit the studio."

Simple Plan is also tentatively planning a tour of South America in February or March, according to Bouvier.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

Print