Activist singer-songwriter from Brisbane, Phil Monsour, has released a new song and video, “Voices Rising”.
The song was commissioned by the Queensland Teachers' Union for the GA Daughtrey Art Bequest. The video was filmed at a Brisbane school and celebrates the work of teachers and the struggles of the Queensland Teachers’ Union.
A the same time, Monsour has released One Song One Union, an album of contemporary trade union and solidarity songs, which is available online at CD Baby. It features songs dedicated to the Maritime Union of Australia, the Electrical Trades Union, the Queensland Teachers’ Union, the Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union, the Queensland Nurses and Midwives’ Union, United Voice and the Queensland Council of Unions.
It also features a number of solidarity songs about refugees and asylum seekers and includes the song “Who Killed Reza Berati” recorded for the Refugee Action Collective.
The album came to life on two picket lines. The first was on the Brisbane waterfront, when the shipping giant Hutchison fired half its workforce by text message. “One More Day than Them” is inspired by the Maritime Union’s fight for the workers. After 100 days of picketing they defiantly walked back through the gates.
The second picket line was at a children’s hospital – brave medical workers refused to discharge injured refugee child Asha into Australia’s infamous offshore detention prisons. “Let Them Stay” was written then. In a small victory, baby Asha and her family were allowed to remain, all be it in community detention.
This album reflects this trade union resistance. For a year, Monsour met with participating unions and wrote songs to capture their defiant spirit.
[Visit philmonsour.com to preview the tracks and buy the album.]