For those of you who follow my video releases, you will know that I worked with Wesleyan University Environmental Economist Dr. Gary Yohe in 2017 to produce the video Erosion – released on the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration – and then last January we produced the sequel, Destruction.
Well, it’s that time of year again, and there’s a new National Climate Assessment (which Dr. Yohe was on the NAS review committee for), so we are ready to roll out the third installment, Redemption, making it a trilogy.
Each song is an attempt to summarize and deliver the findings of the report to President Trump, but of course the chances of him actually hearing the song are very slim, so the more practical agenda is to alert the public to the current impacts and projected future repercussions of climate change here in the US, and mobilize people to support the kinds of policies and activism that will lead to the least damaging scenarios in both the near and distant future.
To make the first two videos I filmed my parts against a green screen and made the whole videos as a collage of news footage with myself inserted, but for this one the chorus was specifically designed to be sung by many voices, in the anthemic vein of “We Shall Overcome” or “Give Peace A Chance”, so it wouldn’t have been right to make the whole video on my lonesome.
Luckily, I didn’t have to. The singer/songwriter who features on the chorus, New York’s rising star Jessie Davis, was up for a filming with us, and we found the perfect venue at the launch of Extinction Rebellion NYC, who had serendipitously reached out to me already about performing a climate-themed song or two there, so I hastily pulled together a video team and we premiered Redemption for the 350 or so attendees at the meeting, and then invited them to appear as extras in the video singing the hook.
In other news, I have now performed 13 of the 32 shows scheduled in my current Rap Guide Series off-Broadway, which opened on December 27th. This means I do a different show each night, which is a good challenge for my brain and body to say the least. If you’re in NYC, or if you have friends here, come see a show! The full schedule is here.
Or, if you want to catch a show but the ticket price is too steep, check out the new pay after option, which lets you book a ticket for $10 and then decide how much to pay based on how much you liked the show.