Sunday, October 23, 2011

Our Lady Peace and the Occupy movement

A day before the Canadian music blog NXEW tweeted "The U.S. sites are full of live performances from well known acts, why aren't Canada's musicians turning up at #OccupyCanada?" this below message came through my inbox via Bob Lefsetz and his music musings newsletter. Our Lady Peace is one of my favorite Canadian rock bands, even from before I lived in Toronto. While they may not be performing in the Occupy movement, they are definitely getting involved. Check out their latest song/video entitled "Fight The Good Fight" and see lead singer Raine Maida's letter to Bob Lefsetz below.

From: raine maida
Subject: Our Lady Peace/OCCUPY movement

Hi Bob,

I'm the singer in the band Our Lady Peace. We were signed to Columbia for 10 years,1997-2007 had a cpl platinum records blah blah blah.

I've been reading some interesting stories regarding The OCCUPY movement lately. Some asking, "Where is this movement's Dylan or Joan Baez or Lennon?" Others telling bands/artists to fuck off and stay away from the movement. In a day and age when branding is such an ingrained part of our culture i find this a very compelling issue.

I've been involved in different social causes ever since the day i was handed an Amnesty Int. sticker at a Peter Gabriel concert back in the late 80's. Adbusters has always been my preferred reading material. (great counter culture mag from Vancouver & initiators of this movement). i've traveled to and filmed Docs in Iraq and Darfur and helped rebuild schools in D.R of Congo with an organization i trust called Warchild.

On Oct 15th the 4 members of OLP occupied in Detroit ,LA, Toronto and NY. We marched, spoke to protesters and shot footage over the course of last weekend and have now edited a video with that footage to a song we recently recorded called "Fight The Good Fight."

Interestingly enough we've received numerous hate emails, dislikes on facebook etc for supporting the movement. I fully understand the pitfalls for an artist involving themselves with certain issues. This one i'm baffled by though...isn't everybody concerned with the future? Are we not all worried about our jobs, education, healthcare, the fact that there is no transparency in Govt or big business these days? This movement has suffered from disinformation and shameful reporting by the mainstream media.

Much like the artists with the courage to voice their opinions in days past, this song/video is our way of supporting the movement and getting the message out. Nothing Machiavellian about this. We're speaking from our hearts. Hell, I brought my young kids to the Los Angeles rally. This song is for them!

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