The music community has reacted in myriad ways to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the same can be said following the May 25 death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis police custody.
Singer-songwriter KT Tunstall and hardcore band Gatherers are among the latest to respond, with both acts donating the proceeds from their respective new singles to organizations aiding in these issues.
“Lockdown has been strange and challenging for all of us,” Tunstall said in a statement. “I haven’t found it easy to sit and make new music. However, ‘Wash Ya Hands’ was a flash of inspiration to write something fun to dance to.”
Created using laptops, “Wash Ya Hands” is about “how we move forward from this situation,” Tunstall added. A lyric video for the song is due June 8.
New Jersey-based Gatherers will donate the proceeds from the single “Massalette,” released June 3 on vinyl via No Sleep Records and also as a digital download, to five organizations: the Official George Floyd Memorial Fund, Black Visions Collective, Reclaim the Block, Facing History and Ourselves, and The Bail Project.
“Through the relative comfort we feel living in the police state that we have the option of taking for granted, we end up being complicit in the violence perpetuated against black and brown people,” said the band in a June 3 letter on the No Sleep website. “It is part of our duty as artists to help those in distress transcend their pain through our art and through our economic support.”
— By Chris M. Junior