fbpx
Girth Radio Home

Recent posts: Raising The Village

NewMusic Ten Interview with…Sound of Change

RTV_SoundOfChange_FBcover

Recently I chatted with Lucas Canzona of Sound of Change to explore how his organization operates in a world inundated with causes and appeals for social change.

Their May 16th showcase at Adelaide Hall (in Toronto) in support of Raise the Village simultaneously benefits a worthy cause and offers a diverse array of local artists: The Elwins, Fast Romantics, Aukland, John River and Iris. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online.

What appeals to you about Raising the Village?

I came across Raising the Village in kind of a strange way, I was home from school and Shawn [Cheung] was featured talking about his organization on tv.

It appealed to me in that it doesn’t just apply a “band aid” solution to a problem, but instead it works with local leaders to address and solve problems at a local level and enables them to do it on their own, within their own communities.

Given that Raising the Village is a community based organization: does that sense of community translate at Sound of Change events?

Not necessarily, most people would come to these shows regardless of a cause or not. We are on the level of focusing on the music first and foremost. We pick bands and artists who are doing big and exciting things in the music scene right now, so we try and connect with them and showcase them when we can.

Our aim is mostly to connect with local artists and promote them as best we can.

Is dedicating showcases to non-profits like Raising the Village enabling activists to form a stronger community at a local level?

A lot of the time were pairing bands who would not normally play together; a lot of these shows feature a headliner who was a lot of name recognition and touring experience outside of North America and pair them with bands with local experience.

To find local bands we usually source our connections, so the experience is a little more personal. I think finding local bands and giving them a chance to connect with new people creates a greater sense of community for them.

Will the diverse lineup on May 16 appeal to a wider audience for Raising a Village?

Generally our shows have a specific focus, like indie rock or hard rock, Friday night is the first time we’ve ever tried the music festival model.

We wanted to diversify the lineup more than we normally do, the fact that we have a hip hop set and a dj set on the bill is the type of diversity that is really positive in the end. I’ve noticed that with some organizations they will see a disaster happen, organize a benefit show and then nothing will happen.

With Sound of Change we get to do something that has longevity and will continue to benefit the cause. There aren’t a lot of organizations who do benefit concerts and continue on with the organization, Sound of Change gets to flip the equation so that we put on a show and keep the relationship going with the organization.

Given that we are somewhat socially desensitized to charitable causes, and taught to view social media or arts based initiatives as a form of “slacktivism” how do you combat that sentiment and maintain integrity and dedication to social causes through music?

We really only work organizations we can trust and who have a good reputation for acting and distributing funds internationally.

We also like to diversify our causes so that more than one cause can benefit from the sustainable way in which we fund raise. Raising the Village is a similarly sustainable, Toronto organization and we know their history and the group well enough to know they are going to do good things with the profits.

We research each organization to make sure they know what they are doing with the funds we give them.

We specialize in music and we will allow organizations that we trust to take our money and do good things with those profits because that is there specialty.

How do you see Sound of Change evolving in the next couple of years?

My opinion and view of where its going to go is literally changing every week as we get going and go along. Being in the music industry is first and foremost our direction.

We constantly want to work with new people and artists as we go and build those connections. We want to promote new artists but we also want to be an organization that is well known and respected, we wanted to be trusted by the artists who will work with us.

Literally I feel like next week my opinion would be different, but overall I hope for a steady pattern of growth, were relatively new but I think there is a huge opportunity for us to grow in different ways.

Are you made more hopeful by your ability to align social causes and music?

We think what we do is fairly sustainable and has room to grow. There is certainly room for us to grow in the music industry in terms of who we are working with and what we can achieve with them. This is a foundation stage, but going forward we want to make it as sustainable as possible.

Admittedly, I am the type of person who is wary of the social validity of benefit shows, and how those profits are being used, but after speaking with Lucas I’m excited to come out on May 16 and show my support.

All profits from tickets sold tomorrow will go directly to Raise the Village, and you can be assured in knowing that this organization will effectively distribute that money at a local level.

Beyond that, May 16th represents a unique opportunity to bridge global communities through non profit and music.

On one hand, you will be able to explore a vast array of genre and sound and on the other, you are an active rather than “slacktive” part of promoting social change on the global scale.

15 May 2014 Girth Radio Blog  NewMusic Ten Blog Read more

Live Below The Line: Dispatch #3

Live Below The Line

Yo Ben Affleck:

So hungry. Not the “Mom-when-is-dinner-ready-I’m-starving!” hungry. Like hungry hungry.

Can you cheer me up and tell me a funny Hollywood story?

Sammy

Support my Live Below The Line profile.

1 May 2013 NewMusic Ten Blog Read more

Live Below The Line: Dispatch #2

Live Below The Line

Yo Ben Affleck:

The caffeine withdrawal is the worst part…why didn’t anybody say anything! It’s called an addiction because it’s so automatic, I’m aware of my vices. I’m at stage 5 acceptance. I’m comfortably numb, you know? I probably could use a Fight Club lecture, really who couldn’t use a Fight Club lecture?

(Is it ok to talk about movies you’re not in?).

With no tea and no Coke I’m getting headaches and nausea. It’s like being seasick on land. It’s not as impressive as it sounds.

How are you holding up?

Matt Damon giving you a hard time…that guy always seems surly. Ever seen him on Entourage or House of Lies…surly. Course that could all be acting. In which case I am sorry Matt. It’s not me, it’s the hunger…please don’t Bourne me.

What’s harder living for $1.50 a day for 5 days or getting Good Will Hunting made?

Sammy

Support my Live Below The Line profile.

30 April 2013 NewMusic Ten Blog Read more

Live Below The Line: Dispatch #1

Live Below The Line

Yo Ben Affleck:

So today’s the first day of Live Below The Line. How is your story so far? I am doing alright, bit hungry, otherwise I’m all good, business as it should.

Thanks for spending your celebrity currency on this campaign. That’s one element of suck associated with your 15…soon as you get famous there’s all kinds of demands on your time and your Daredevil money to support all kinds of causes. Think you choose wisely, sure warrants a high five.

Is Kevin Smith hasslin you? Yet? That guy should totally join us, invite him to the party. We can gang up and recycle Uncle Phil fat jokes from the Fresh Prince. (Better to go with the obvious when cracking sass, if we bring up Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back he’ll come back with Gigli jokes and it’ll get ugly quick, especially with everybody so hungry).

Should be a fascinating week, trying to live on $1.75 a day. (Well for you it’s a $1.50 a day…which is kinda of a rip, since American McDonald’s offers a dollar menu…4 nuggets for the win, yo!).

Though the limits are food I wonder if comic books, novels and movies count in my daily allowance. You know, soul nourishment. Trying to live on $1.75 a day on pop culture couldn’t get you far. Thank the Big Dude for the library (and free comic book day). In many ways there’s lot of things I can give up or do without, daily nourishment from movies and comic books and music is not one of them.

I don’t require a fast to be grateful for all the hardworking people who make my pop culture. I do wish it was easier to high five and fist bump em as a way to say thanks.

By the way, I am sorry I haven’t seen Argo. I’m on it.

Sammy

Support my Live Below The Line profile.

29 April 2013 NewMusic Ten Blog Read more

Live Below The Line

Live Below The Line

So check this out: April 29-May 3, I (Sammy) will be participating in a campaign called Live Below the Line where I will only eat and drink on $1.75 for 5 days, the Canadian equivalent of the extreme poverty line.

Madness. (Although just in time for swimsuit season, so that’s a handy plus).

I’m reaching out to you, the fabulous and fresh music community because I know you enjoy supporting worthy causes.

With the money raised, Raising The Village (RTV), a Canadian organization, will partner with the village of Murole in southwest Uganda to end their daily struggle with extreme poverty.

Using sustainable and innovative projects committed to community empowerment, leadership, and ownership, RTV partners with the most remote villages in sub-Saharan Africa to eliminate extreme poverty. In Murole, this will include projects such as mountain gorilla deterrence, agricultural training, a goat cooperative and school construction in order to improve food production and security, access to education and income generation opportunities.

With an average household income of less than 10 cents a day and a 98% illiteracy rate, Murole is RTV’s most challenging project yet but the passion and dedication of the villagers affirm that they’re affirm that they’re on the road to recovery.

That’s the pitch! How can you not be inspired to help? Don’t you want to see significant change happen? I do so that’s why I am doing this. It’s debatable if one man can make a difference, collectively however there’s no limit to what we can accomplish.

Enjoy this fascinating video on Murole and RTV HERE.

You can donate HERE.

And if there are do-gooders in your life, please pass this on, another viable option. Tweet it, facebook it, text it…whatever the cool kids do.

Sammy

22 April 2013 NewMusic Ten Blog Read more