‘Solidarity Sounds’ events raise funds for war victims

February 21, 2024
DJ deck with dove of peace
Solidarity Sounds is launching on March 8 in Sydney. Graphic: Green Left

With the escalating conflict in Gaza, the disproportionate violence and ongoing occupation of Palestine, a group of DJs and performers in Sydney started talking about ways they could demonstrate their solidarity with people feeling the pain of war.

Solidarity Sounds was born out of these discussions and aims to give voice to the oppressed and raise funds for victims of war.

“Artists and musicians have a powerful voice for resistance, solidarity and peace. As musicians and artists we have an obligation to raise our voices against injustices and stand in solidarity with our fellow humans”, said Nadeem Afghani, a Palestinian Jordanian who runs the Moonshift event collective.

Nadeem’s childhood was filled with stories from family members who witnessed the pain of occupation first hand.

For Nadeem, watching this disaster continue to unfold and escalate makes using his voice as an artist not just a privilege, but a moral obligation.

“My family fled to Jordan alongside tens of thousands of Palestinian families escaping the war. They left most of their belongings thinking they would return within a week or two, but their home was stolen and they were denied entry back to their own land.

“I grew up with so much pain and anger watching the news and countless videos of innocent unarmed Palestinians being slaughtered and not being able to do anything about it. I felt so helpless and I wanted more than anything to be there with my cousins throwing rocks and resisting."

This motivated Nadeem to help kick start Solidarity Sounds. Among the group are indigenous artists, poets, veteran anti-war activists, and community event organisers. The group aims to make a clear stand against war and for peace and hopes to encourage other artists and event organisers to do the same.

“Music has enormous power to bring diverse people together and speaks to us in ways that allows us to share our common humanity on the dance floor”, said Rebecca Le May, DJ, activist and co-founder of Solidarity Sounds.

Solidarity Sounds is calling out to all artists who share the group’s desire for peace, to use their voice and networks to “raise the vibration for peace and send a message that war is not a viable solution to any conflict”.

They are launching their initiative with a dance party at the Red Rattler Theatre in Marrickville, on Friday March 8.

The group will be raising funds for Medicins Sans Frontieres, United Nations Works and Relief Agency (UNWRA) and Swedish organisation Kvinna — Support for Women & Children.

[For more information, or to find out how to run a Solidarity Sounds event, contact bec_lemay@yahoo.com.au.]

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