An impressive line-up of artists are coming together for a special benefit event on August 7 in Mountain View, California, USA. Amongst them names as Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt, Jason Mraz, The Doobie Brothers, Tom Morello, John Hall, Kitaro, Jonathan Wilson, Sweet Honey in the Rock.
Proceeds from the concert will be distributed to Musicians United for Safe Energy (MUSE) to support Japan disaster relief efforts, and organizations worldwide working to promote safe, alternative, non-nuclear energy. “The disaster in Fukushima is not only a disaster for Japan. It is a global disaster. We come together now across cultural boundaries, political and generational boundaries, to call for changes in the way we use energy, and in the ways we conduct the search for solutions to the problems facing humanity,” says Jackson Browne. “We join with the people of Japan, and people everywhere who believe in a non-nuclear future.”
It was shortly after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami that triggered multiple meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan that the decision was made to coordinate a benefit. Shoreline Amphitheatre was chosen because of its close proximity to the Pacific Rim, Northern California’s history and deep association with Japan—and because nuclear reactors on the California coast store spent fuel rods in the same manner as at Fukushima. The concert date falls between the anniversaries of atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima (August 6, 1945) and Nagasaki (August 9, 1945).
“The MUSE concert will not only be a great show, it will hopefully entice the public to become better informed of the tremendous dangers of nuclear power,” says Graham Nash. “We have to keep real and true information flowing so that people can act on it.”
“We’re so lucky to have been able to bring back some of the original MUSE team to collaborate with some new and younger artists for MUSE 2, so that we can immediately help with the Japan relief effort and raise funds and awareness for the no nukes issue,” says Bonnie Raitt. “I'm excited to be a part of this important and truly collaborative effort. It’s going to be a very special, one of a kind event.”
Pat Simmons, of The Doobie Brothers, who performed at the original MUSE shows adds, "We are so proud to be reuniting with so many of our talented friends, who share our concern for the safety, and sustainable future of our fragile planet. Current events have brought us to a turning point in our human existence. It's time to consider alternatives to the present course of energy production that have been forced upon us by an aggressive corporate power structure. We join together to generate funds to help our Japanese friends, as they recover from the devastation that they have had to endure, due to man's careless use of nuclear energy, and nature's unpredictability. Through these efforts we also hope to raise public awareness of the challenges we are faced with, and the important responsibilities we share in moving us towards a safer, nuclear free future."
The concert stage will be powered by an integrated system of clean, alternative energy sources, using solar, biodiesel, and wind technologies. One goal is that the concert will inspire musicians in other areas to organize shows that both employ and promote safe energy alternatives, and that raise funds for disaster relief efforts and for groups—local, regional, national, and international alike—advocating non-nuclear programs and initiatives.
“As Japan struggles to subdue meltdowns at Fukushima, and Ft. Calhoun Nuclear in Nebraska struggles to keep its reactor and spent fuel above the Missouri's floodwaters, we once again face a crucial choice,” says John Hall. “Will we, as a country, invest in clean, renewable sources of energy, or will we continue to use taxpayer dollars to indemnify and subsidize the dirty, deadly old technologies that are making our planet unlivable?”
"Even though the news cycle has moved on from the Fukushima disaster, this is another massive world energy disaster from which there will be long-term effects,” adds Jason Mraz. “I am thrilled to be a part of this amazing show that will not only help those in Japan, but that will also call attention to the urgent need to embrace safe, clean energy alternatives."
Japanese musician and multi-instrumentalist, Kitaro, joined the bill as a way to give thanks “for all of the support for Japan from the world, and to all of the Japanese, who are helping each other.” He adds, “It is time to consider the change to alternative clean energy instead of nuclear power.”