E m i l e
H o l b a to a music-led lobby that will help cool down the planet – or not. In this respect music from outside the West is uniquely placed to provide a panoply of responses and opinions including, crucially, the voice of those who are already suffering the consequences of climate change, whether this be Brazil’s Lucas Santtana who summons nature to turn on the government; Dhaka folkster Rushnaf Wadud lamenting rampant development on the hills of Chittagong; Angélique Kidjo stepping gracefully from stage to international forum or Youssou N’Dour adding credibili and gravi to a glitzy fundraiser. Le to the NGOs and mega-organisations, or, indeed, top-bill rock and pop celebs, the realities of the planet’s crisis are liable to become generalised, bland and saccharine. We are all affected, in different ways; world music can serve as a kind of alternative international panel on climate change – filling the silence, reporting the facts, dissing the deniers.
Meanwhile, good music is always there to inspire and awaken, to heighten the awareness but take away the anxie , to dance to, without letting Rome burn. “To beat the opposition, we have to throw a better par ,” says Sam Lee. “Music has always led societal shi . It’s always been at the heart of revolution and I think we’re seeing it in the current rebellion for the first time since the 60s.”
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Taking inspiration from the artists who are already doing their part to help counteract climate change and create a sustainable music industry, we’re also implementing some changes in our working practices to contribute to the cause (more details on p3).
From eating locally and shunning plastic bottles to planting trees and saving electrici , you’re probably already aware and doing these things. But as a music lover, here are a few other ways to make a difference:
SUPPORT ENVIRONMENT LLY-MINDED RTISTS ND MUSICI NS In addition to the inspiring artists mentioned in this feature and in our Essential 10 Albums article (p102), there are many more artists doing amazing work. Do your bit by supporting them, buying their music, sharing their songs or donating to their crowdfunding projects. And don’t forget to let us know about them!
JOIN, SUPPORT ND FOLLO ENVIRONMENT LLY-MINDED ORG NIS TIONS There are a handful of organisations really going the distance to help, from the more overt activism of Extinction Rebellion to the creative chari work of Julie’s Bicycle. Here are some key ones: Music Declares Emergency Artists and music professionals teaming up to address the climate crisis. To date, 619 organisations, 1,229 artists and 523 individuals have signed up. www.musicdeclares.net Extinction Rebellion The global movement continues to make headlines with their non-violent civil disobedience. They’re currently calling for singers to join XR Choirs and music programmers to help organise events. www.rebellion.earth Julie’s Bicycle This impressive chari has been helping the artistic communi act on climate change for over ten years. www.juliesbicycle.com
SUPPORT ENVIRONMENT LLY-MINDED EVENTS, FESTIV LS ND VENUES More and more venues are making environmental sustainabili a priori with several UK festivals going plastic-free. Venues like Cecil Sharp House are committing themselves to better environmental practices and will be hosting a climate crisis conference next year (more details to follow). Show your support by choosing to attend these events.
GET CTIVE Whether you take part in a demonstration or encourage the people around you to do their bit, it’s time to shout and sing out about the climate crisis. Together, we can all make a difference, but we’re running out of time. Remember, there’s no music on a dead planet.
ISSUE 154 › SONGLINES 31