How rockers are rallying support for Ukraine
It has been a month since Russia invaded Ukraine, unleashing a brutal war the likes of which has not been seen in Europe for decades.
When the conflict began, the rockers took to social media to express their support for Ukraine, but as the war continues to rage, many have stepped up their efforts, moving from words to deeds.
A wide range of musicians have rallied their support, using their fame to help organize fundraisers and raise awareness. Below, we’ve rounded up some of the notable campaigns from rockers around the world.
Dee Snider, “Stand Up (For Ukraine)”
Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snider has been one of the loudest celebrity voices supporting Ukraine since the Russian invasion began. In February, the singer said he “absolutely” supports Ukrainians’ use of the song “We’re Not Gonna Take It” as a battle cry. More recently, he released a reworked music video for his song “Stand”, originally released on the 2021 solo album. leave a scar. “I just couldn’t understand how the lyrics resonated with Putin’s attack on these innocent people. Ukraine was the furthest thing from my mind when I wrote the lyrics to this song, but it felt like I had done just that,” the singer explained, announcing “Support (for Ukraine)The video is part of Snider’s ongoing work with World United Live, an online platform focused on pro-Ukraine protests.
Queen + Paul Rodgers Fundraiser
In 2008, Queen and Paul Rodgers performed for over 350,000 people in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s historic Freedom Square. At the time, the concert was in aid of the ANTIAIDS Foundation, but footage from the performance has recently been repurposed to help with humanitarian aid. “Today, as millions of Ukrainian refugees need urgent humanitarian aid for another ailment, Queen returns to its historic moment with a special YouTube screening aimed at attracting donations for UNHCR’s relief efforts” , Brian May announcement in mid-March. “Queen + Paul Rodgers Live in Ukraine” began airing shortly thereafter. He has since helped raise over $5 million in funds for the UN Refugee Agency.
The Cure Ukraine T-shirt
A special band t-shirt was created by The Cure, with all net proceeds helping to support those in Ukraine. The jersey features the band’s logo in blue and yellow on the front – the colors of the Ukrainian flag – while the back features the words “As Far As I Will Always Love You”, a quote from Cure’s classic 1989 hit “Lovesong “. (Click on here to buy.)
Various artists, “Come Together” cover
Over 30 artists – including current and former members of Faith No More, Rammsteingravity kills, stab west, Filtered and Ministry – united to record an all-star rendition of The Beatles’ “Come Together.” The track was released on Bandcamp and all proceeds were donated to UNICEF.
Bon Jovi Viral Video
Civilians in Odessa, Ukraine were seen loading sandbags and preparing to defend their homes in a video that has gone viral on social media. Bon Jovi’s “It’s My Life” blared in the background – accompanied by a live drummer – as men and women stepped up to help. The video quickly made its way to Jon Bon Jovi, who retweeted it with one of the song’s poignant lyrics:This is for those who held on.” The video has since been viewed more than 1.8 million times.
Arcade Fire Surprise Concerts
Acclaimed Canadian indie rock band Arcade Fire has raised over $100,000 for PLUS1’s Ukraine Relief Fund with a series of surprise shows. The concerts – one in New Orleans, four in New York – allowed fans to pay what they could afford for admission. The final show featured guest appearances from actor and comedian Mike Myers and musician David Byrne, the latter of whom joined Arcade Fire for an interpretation of “Give Peace a Chance” by the Plastic Ono Band.
A stranger turns his Vegas residence into a fundraiser
Foreigner announced that he has partnered with the American Red Cross to help raise money for Ukrainian relief efforts during the band’s residency at The Venetian Resort in Las Vegas. Performances are held on select dates through April 9. Foreigner will donate $5,000 each night of the residency to help the cause, while Red Cross representatives will be on hand at each concert to accept donations from fans.
Jinjer Charity Shirts
When war broke out, Ukrainian metal band Jinjer canceled plans to tour the United States and instead focused their attention on helping their homeland. The group has created a series of charity t-shirts, with all proceeds going to local groups across Ukraine. Jinjer’s campaign has already raised more than $140,000 in aid. “Your support will not only help so many in need, but will send a much needed positive sign that they are not alone,” said the the group said in an update thanking fans.
Pussy Riot NFT
Russian punk band Pussy Riot, known for his outspoken stance against Vladimir Putin, posted an NFT of the Ukrainian flag to help raise money for relief efforts. With partners in the cryptocurrency and blockchain industries, the NFT sale was able to generate around $7.1 million. Rather than a single sale, this number represents donations from over 3,000 contributors who will collectively “own” the image.
Concert “Night for Ukraine”
On March 9, a collection of notable artists came together for a special gig at London’s Roadhouse nightclub. Irish singer-songwriter Bob Geldof, known for his involvement in Band Aid and Live Aid, Pretenders singer Chrissie Hynde and Scottish rockers Franz Ferdinand were among the performers. All proceeds went to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), a UK charity, which helps refugees fleeing Ukraine.
Sting revisits the “Russians”
Sting has shared a video of himself performing his 1985 song “Russians,” revealing the track has taken on new meaning given the crisis in Ukraine. “I’ve only rarely sung that song in the many years since it was written because I never thought it would be relevant again,” he explained. “But in light of one man’s bloody and woefully misguided decision to invade a peaceful, non-threatening neighbor, the song is, once again, a plea for our common humanity.” In his caption accompanying the video, Sting included links to resources for medical and humanitarian aid in Ukraine.
Patti Smith among the performers of “A Benefit for Ukraine”
Patti Smith, Stephin Merritt of Magnetic Fields, Suzanne Vega, Craig Finn and Franz Nicolay of indie rock band The Hold Steady and others reunited for a benefit performance March 10 at City Winery in New York City. The evening was hosted by Eugene Hutz, leader of the Ukrainian-born gypsy punk band Gogol Bordello. Over $130,000 was raised at the event, with $50,000 coming from Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon.
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