Folk group meet West Hampstead man whose partner’s suicide inspired song

PUBLISHED: 17:41 23 August 2017 | UPDATED: 10:53 24 August 2017

Sean Cooney, Michael Hughes, Matthew Ogston and David Eagle (left to right) at Nazim Mahmood's memorial bench at Hampstead cemetery Picture: Nathan Louis

Sean Cooney, Michael Hughes, Matthew Ogston and David Eagle (left to right) at Nazim Mahmood's memorial bench at Hampstead cemetery Picture: Nathan Louis


A man who lost his partner to suicide in 2014 and a band who wrote a song about the couple have met for the first time in an emotional encounter.

Matthew Ogston met The Young’uns, a folk band from Teeside at Hampstead cemetery on August 23, at the memorial bench for Nazim Mahmood.

Three years ago on July 30, Nazim, Matt’s partner of 13 years, jumped to his death after his family found out that he was gay. The tragedy spurred Matt on to create a foundation to try and prevent people from going through similar circumstances.

The Young’uns are a three piece trio.‘Be the Man’ is their tribute to Matt and Naz. Sean Cooney from the folk band said he hopes the song will breed hope and said they were delighted to finally meet Matt.

He said: “We heard about it for the first time in an article and we thought Matt’s interview was so honest and graceful. I knew we wanted to write a song about this. It took me a while to tell Matt that we had written a song about Naz but he was wonderful and so gracious with his response.

Matt spoke about how perfect the song was even though he had never met Sean or his fellow band members David Eagle and Michael Hughes. “My favourite line is ‘when his brown eyes first met mine, I knew he was the one’. The lyrics feel so accurate to the work of our foundation and its phenomenal to hear a song about Naz. It was so heartwarming, so wonderful, so special to meet them,” Matt said.

The Young’uns, who have won consecutive BBC radio 2 folk awards, first performed ‘Be the Man’ in the UK at Glastonbury this year. Matt will be a special guest when they perform at the Union Chapel on October 12.

The Naz and Matt foundation which was set up in 2014 has one simple motto - to not let religion come between unconditional love and Matt works with LGBT people to ensure that they have someone to talk to if they feel they can’t talk to their family.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories


Keir Starmer has said the government’s approach to Universal Credit is similar to the “hostile environment” policy that led to the Windrush scandal.

Yesterday, 16:30

The Phoenix Cinema will hold a meeting on fundraising for the historic cinema this weekend.

Yesterday, 13:14

A special interfaith Remembrance Sunday parade in Highgate saw attendees from across faiths and generations join together to pay their respects to those who fought and died in the First World War.

Yesterday, 11:59

Camden Council has backed calls for a second referendum on Brexit, with councillors overwhelmingly supporting a motion last night.

Yesterday, 11:21

A charity café in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park run by the Camden Society has been lauded for its inclusivity and work in the community.

Yesterday, 10:42

Mitzvah Day organisers are encouraging everyone to volunteer for a good cause on Sunday – so the Ham&High got into the spirit by helping out a group of heroes who give supplies and friendship to homeless people every week.

Yesterday, 09:43

The killers of a man who succumbed to horrific injuries inflicted on him in a drunken hostel fight five and a half years earlier have been sentenced over his murder.

Mon, 17:07

A sixteen year old boy has been charged with grievous bodily harm with intent over the Billy Fury Way stabbing which left another teenager in a “critical condition” in hospital.


Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now