Singer/Guitarist Says They Do “Great Damage” To Women During BBC’s Woman’s Hour SEP 10, 2015 – Chrissie Hynde, Leader of the 1980s English punk pop rock band The Pretenders, has been making the rounds pushing her book and also pushing boundaries on women’s issues lately. Last week she made ripples claiming responsibility for a sexual…
SEP 17, 2013 – Singer Katy Perry found herself defending her use of animals in her new "Roar" music video, which features many animals such as an elephant, a crocodile, and even a tiger. PETA complained in a letter obtained by Hollywood Reporter stating, "…animals used for entertainment in film and television endure horrific cruelty and suffer from extreme confinement and violent training methods".
Katy Perry responded with a letter from the American Humane Association that stated they believed that the "Guidelines for the Safe Use of Animals in Filmed Media were followed and that no animal was harmed in the making of this music video." Read more on Hollywood Reporter.com here, and watch Katy Perry "Roar"! here. (photo credit: Simon Wedege Peterson/CC)
SEP 12, 2013 – JTMP is a strong supporter of new and fairer forms of capitalism, and we strongly support cooperatives and employee-owned businesses like Publix; and we ran across a great project going on with online retailer Aplomb we just had to tell you about. They have turned their website into a forum where people exchange ideas about important issues and build up votes to use as currency. Art work is inspired, and that art is then put on their t-shirts that the "Creative Conspiracy", as they call themselves, can buy with their accumulated activist work credit they have done online.
JTMP caught up with Ryan from Aplomb in an email interview, and he was nice enough to tell us about how it all began. Ryan explained to JTMP that Aplomb started back in 2006 with his observation on how little you could pay artists in the t-shirt apparel business, and he also felt other injustices within the apparel industry were happening. Their "streetwear brand" t-shirt apparel business would pay as little as $200 for the artist's work, and didn't even have to give them credit. He says in the interview, "Something that stuck out was how ridiculous 'lifestyle' brands were. It was crazy that people would actually pay or buy into someone's lifestyle. That is when the epiphany started." Ryan then went on to say, "I would get people involved in the brand, use their ideas to provide significant meaning in the products we sold instead of promoting another 'lifestyle'. I would pay artists fairly and promote them along with the people's ideas instead of ourselves. In an industry that promotes the promotion of self we knew we had the opportunity to change things by putting the fans and the artists first."
SEP 25, 2012 – (Photo credit: CC/JayUzi) The classic southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, known through the years for using the Confederate flag on their album covers and onstage, have finally decided to stop using the flag as a symbol onstage and on any further albums. The current members sat down with Fredricka of CNN for a "Face to Face" interview (watch below) and spoke about the band's evolution and the decision to stop using the Confederate flag that is so highly offensive to many people. One of the original founding members, Gary Rossington, says in the video, “Through the years, people like the KKK and skinheads kinda kidnapped the Dixie or Southern flag from its tradition and the heritage of the soldiers, that’s what it was about. We didn’t want that to go to our fans or show the image like we agreed with any of the race stuff or any of the bad things.” The decision has angered some of their fans, and have accused them of "selling out" or being "too politically correct". One note, the "flag" they always have used over the years is actually the the "battle flag of the Army of Tennessee", not the CSA National Flag. This is what the actual CSA Flag looks like (well the main one, they went through 3 versions):
Personally, I feel it is about time. I will admit, I was a huge Lynyrd Skynyrd fan growing up in Virginia in my teens, and I unfortunately have to admit I also hung a confederate flag in my room next to their poster. Later, when I realized how offensive and horrible it looked, I took it down and haven't displayed one for 30 years. I support their decision. It's a shame for them to be caught up in this, because in their early years they wrote some good, progressive songs, such as "Things Goin' On" about poverty and the ghettos; and then of course the gun control song, "Saturday Night Special" saying "Lert's dump 'em all people, to the bottom of the sea". In the song "All I Can Do Is Write About It", Ronnie laments about over-development and the environmental impact: "Cuz when I see the concrete, a slowly creeping, Lord take me and mine before that comes." "The Ballad of Curtis Loew" was a song against racism.
Also, Lynyrd Skynyrd was booked to play the Republican National Convention in Tampa, but Hurricane Isaac forced them to cancel. It came up that two of the band members are "Democrats" and were kind of upset about the possible gig and it caused a little stir in the band, but they aren't breaking up or anything. It was mostly for a concert for wounded soldiers that was going to take place in Liberty Plaza that they wanted to play for, not the politics Gary Rossington told ABC News. Below is the CNN Interview:
MAY 8, 2012 – Tony Sclafani on MSNBC Entertainment has a great article about MCA, Adam Yauch from the Beastie Boys, and how he brought social consciousness to the Beastie Boys. Adam passed away last week from cancer, and JTMP has been blogging about him recently and how he became a Buddhist and evolved into a socially conscious musical activist, with the Free Tibet movement being one of his causes. Tony writes how they started helping out many causes such as ASPCA, Food Bank for NY, and Habitat for Humanity among others. Check out the article on MSNBC here.(photo credit: blythe_d/Flickr)
FEB 3, 2012 – Pink Martini, a band started in 1994 to perform at progressive events to raise awareness and funds for issues, will be playing the 2012 Savannah Music Festival. In a SavannahNow.com interview, founder Thomas Lauderdale says, “The Occupy movement is interesting and complicated because a lot of their talking points are issues which actually most Americans are thinking about. Entertainment is one of the few ways of reaching Americans. It’s not an activist sort of thing. If anything, it’s sort of subtle, more diplomatic than political. ” The 2012 Savannah Music Festival takes place from March 22 through April 7, 2012. Numerous bands are scheduled, check out the whole lineup here. Pink Martini is scheduled for March 29 at the Lucas Theater. (Photo credit: Ryan Harvey/Wiki)
MTV has announced it will be adding a new category for videos that featured a positive social message or raised awareness of issues that are important to today's youth for this year's Video Music Awards show. The new category, called "Best Video With a Message", is in recognition of the many artists that have come out recently with gripping videos that centered around key issues for many young people today, and spoke out against bullying, discrimination against gays, and promoted self-empowerment. Some of the socially active artists have been Pink, who recently came out with a powerful video "F***** Perfect", which dealt with female self-empowerment, and Rise Against did "Make it Stop (September's Children)", a video speaking out against gay teens being bullied at school.
Stephen Friedman, MTV's president, said in a statement, "During the past year, we've seen a remarkable number of artists use their music to explore deeply personal experiences and issues they were passionate about to create powerful videos that resonated with and inspired millions of their fans." The videos that were nominated are:
Eminem and Rihanna – "Love the Way You Lie"
A video that illuminates the pain and perils of domestic violence.
Katy Perry – "Firework"
Celebrating the spark and originality in all of us.
Lady Gaga – "Born This Way"
Mother Monster gives birth to a world free from prejudice, judgment and self- doubt.
Pink – "F****** Perfect"
Pink lets out a cry of reassurance for anyone who's ever felt less than perfect.
Rise Against – "Make it Stop (September's Children)"
Rise Against reminds LBGT teens pushed to the edge that "It gets better".
Taylor Swift – "Mean"
Taylor cautions negative naysayers that being mean gets you nowhere.
To check out the videos and to VOTE for the best "social activist" video, go the MTV website by clicking here.
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