Archive for activism

Wall Street Occupation continues

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , on September 30, 2011 by Weary Hobo

The contagion of revolution has spread to the USA where there is an uprising against corporate greed and it sounds like this provided by Radiohive collective. Radiohive Collective are a group of thinkers, players, and activists aspiring to create an informative and potentially volatile experience for free, international, non-commercial radio.

Today is the thirteenth day of the citizens occupation of Wall St. As you may imagine, the police have reacted violently to protests in the main financial district of the country and people putting up tents at Zucotti Park.

This is a recap of the twelth day by Occupy Wall Street.

According to Holly Stewart (newjersey.com) USA news sources have been ignoring the civil disobediance and police brutality. There has been some coverage from SBS but not for a week or so.

http://cdn.livestream.com/embed/globalrevolution?layout=4&color=0xed1c24&autoPlay=false&mute=false&iconColorOver=0xffffff&iconColor=0xffd2d5&allowchat=true&height=340&width=560

Watch live streaming video from globalrevolution at livestream.com

My senior year of high school my parents lost our house to foreclosure. after being homeless for a short time Our 5 person household was forced to move into a 2 bedroom apartment. My dad was laid off from work a couple months ago after working for the same company for 17 years, he is a U.S immigrant, but also a USA Veteran, but can’t seem to get disability or unemployment [he has a bad back and arthritis in his knees]. My family is supported by my moms income alone.I’m the first person in my entire family to go to college. I’m a senior now and when I graduate I will be in debt $23,750. I want to be able to help my family, and to be strong for them, but I don’t even think I’ll be able to find a job. I am the 99%

So, who are these people and why are they doing it? The photo above comes from The 99 Percent and tells just one moving story.

Edit 3rd October

Yours,

W.H.

Reclaim the Lanes

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , on September 27, 2011 by Weary Hobo

Were you there this Saturday?

The rain didn’t keep us away from Reclaim the Lanes. The video below is an explanation and history of the event from the founder of its latest incarnation Chris Lego and organiser Sophie Trevitt.

I was disappointed that the rain meant The Crooked Fiddle was put back in its case. However, there was a great bit of Old-Timey with the Sydney-based Rusty Spring Syncopators and plenty more to be entertained by.

Here is one of their numbers called ‘Smackin’ the Sex’

Edit 3rd Oct.

And here is a bit of home footage of these rapskallions at Eliza Bar for the last night of Sydney Fringe Festival. Elizabeth Cotton’s ‘O Babe It Ain’t No Lie

Yours,

W.H.

Rising Tide Action

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 16, 2011 by Weary Hobo

Action by Rising Tide in Newcastle on August 5th, 2011 to highlight coal’s contribution to Somalia’s famine

Rising Tide Australia is a grassroots Newcastle group taking action against the causes of anthropogenic climate change and for equitablejust,effective, and sustainable solutions to the crisis. We are committed to the principles of Non-violent Direct Action. We are part of the global Rising Tide climate justice movement. We live in the biggest coal port in the cosmos.

In this action, the activists were calling for coal companies to donate some of their profits to the hundreds of thousands facing starvation due to the terrible climate change driven drought in East Africa.

“Coal is recognised globally as the biggest contributor to climate change. Yet, while climate disaster ravages East Africa, coal companies operating here in Australia are planning to massively expand their coal production, ignoring all the negative impacts.” Spokesperson Naomi Hogan

Climate change is affecting the poorest first. It’s easy for politicians to say “we don’t have enough evidence” speaking the lines that come from minerals councils and lobby groups. The West Australian State Liberals want us to wait for yet another report. A Royal Commission in fact. It is infuriating to people still using these stalling tactics. It is important that we stand with Rising Tide in their actions.

It is not just Australia that battles with the mega-rich resource multi-nationals. Here is a little idea from Canada to address an issue creatively – No Tankers Oil Poster

W.H.

Bluegrass Lock-on

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 10, 2011 by Weary Hobo

“Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, show me a multinational corporation you can trust” -Belle Star

Wednesday 3rd August from IndyMedia Ireland

Local residents and folks from the Rossport Solidarity Camp met at the gates of Shell’s Ballinaboy refinery to begin blocking tractor movements. Everything coming out of the refinery in the morning was delayed by the protesters and no arrests were made. By 8:30am two people had locked themselves into a concrete barrel blocking the road.

The lock-on was cleared at about 12:30pm, having blocked the road for almost 4 hours. Shell to Sea spokesperson Terence Conway, one of the people locked on, commented:

“I’m here because of the obvious corruption involved in Shell and Statoil’s gas project and the management of our resources. The Gardaí are partners in crime with Shell and Statoil in attacking the community.”

Later on people gathered at the refinery to listen to some bluegrass country music by the band Belle Star all the way from Virginia, US. The band had played a fantastic gig in McGuire’s pub the night before and commented that the refinery gig was one of their ‘strangest but most appropriate’ yet.

People were in high spirits, dancing to the music in front of a Shell truck.  The police found it difficult to use their normal force against smiling dancing people.

The hilarity made people feel pretty unstoppable. Even when guards were pushing people along the road with the Shell truck inching along, the bluegrass band kept up with everyone, walking along the road as they played, upright bass and all!

The day finished off with a traditional Appalachian square dance in front of the gates of the refinery. Everyone felt like it was a wonderful way to reclaim that space that is usually occupied by much more sinister activities.

There you go! Congrats to the awesome Belle Star from Virginia, USA for supporting community action struggling to defend their land against massive international giants.

Listen to their version of ‘Trouble in Mind’

http://www.reverbnation.com/play_now/song_9503411

And if you’re wondering, the first line of this blog could be recognised from Doc Watson’s ‘The Train Carried My Girl From Town’. Stay connected to The Lurkers to hear where we are playing next – a Coal Seam Gas protest next week in Sydney!

W. H.

Tim DeChristopher gets two years and a $10,000 fine

Posted in Activism with tags , , , , , , , on July 28, 2011 by Weary Hobo

image

26th July, 2011 outside the Federal Courthouse in Salt Lake City, Utah. 26 people arrested in support of Tim DeChristopher, Climate Activist.

This was the trial where Tim DeChristopher was sentenced to two years imprisonment  and a $10,000 fine. This was for his non-violent civil disobedience action in 2008 at the end of the Bush Administration. Tim disrupted a federal oil and gas auction of $1.8mil worth of leases which would have been mined for oil, gas and coal.

Before his sentencing, Tim noted the squalor of his childhood home state, West Virginia, where he said his mother worked through the legal channels to fight mountaintop-removal coal mining, but to no avail.

In good news, Mantle Mining has abandoned plans to explore for brown coal in South West Victoria after a campaign by residents. Yeew!

W. H.

Who’s got a padlock and chain?

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 24, 2011 by Weary Hobo

Dearest Lurkers,

What does it take to fix a problem like climate change? Maybe just a padlock and chain.

Breaking News! Download the single ‘Who’s Got a Padlock and Chain?‘ from our new album free online now at www.triplejunearthed.com/thelurkers – Listen! Download! Review and help us get the song played on triple J!

The Story

Last year at Climate Camp I took part in non-violent direct action to against burning coal and polluting more carbon. With seventy others, I locked myself on to the coal train line and was arrested and charged. The scariest thing about this was not the doing of locking-on but anxiety about going before a court.

A co-arrestee Justin told me that East Maitland Court used to sentence people to be hanged.

Today our story played out in East Maitland Court where I dressed my finest and arrived early with references signed and in hand. My boss Sarah, a family friend Jan, a person I worked with at Uni Belinda and my friend Kirsty gave me references for the Judge.  We sat in the Court and listened to the Judge as he stated what we had done and how he made his decision about whether we should be convicted. He said we were ‘impressive and remarkable individuals.’

For all of us all it was a big sigh of relief.

We celebrated with drinks and lunch across the train line after Court and the locals congratulated us for what we did. Thanks to the Environmental Defender’s Office especially Sue Higgenson for amazing legal support.

The Crooked Fiddle Band have released their latest ‘Overgrown Tales’ and you can listen to it free online here. Thanks to the band for mentioning us in their liner notes. They’re a gorgeous band and this album is phenomenal. My favourite track is number 7, ‘Over hill and Under Hill.

Don’t forget: www.triplejunearthed.com/thelurkers
Stay Lurky!
Weary H.

Pirate Studios

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 4, 2011 by Weary Hobo

Hi Lurkers,

After a brief two-hour stop over in Syderlee, The Lurkers continued the wonderful adventure south to Tathra and Pirate Studios with Dave Sparks. In 2010, guitarist Daniel Champagne suggested that we get in touch with Dave because of his great studio. We booked in for five nights and four days with Dave doing the audio engineering.

The attentive Mr Sparks

Working with Dave was a pleasure. His style is carefully attentive and not too gentle – he’ll always go for one more take it he thinks we can get the best take. Dave’s background is in punk and because of this his recording style gets a genuine sound that we are really happy with.

The way we’ve been recording is pretty straight musically where we set up a room mic plus mics on each of the three instruments and just go for it. Some songs take longer than others – there was a memorably epic 28 takes for one song. Normally one f the first few takes are the best.

After recording the backing music the lead vocalist will go and do their take.

After the main vocals are done, then the harmonies and any instruments to put over the top like mandolin or solos.

Occasionally, there are some sound effects to our tracks. The little touches make all the difference.

We didn’t want to waste Dave’s time so we’d practice after he’d gone off to bed. Our working day was nine till ten or eleven with breaks for lunch and dinner. Still by then end of the four days our ears were pretty worn out from concentration and our egos shattered from hearing our own selves back over and over again. Tempers were frayed by the end of each day because recording takes a specific musician – perfectionistic attention to detail. Not The Lurkers, but we work hard to get there.

As expensive, difficult and unrewarding it can be recording is unavoidable for a small independent artist. You’ve got to have something to take on the road and give people. Also, getting played on the radio is a massive help if you’re playing in towns you’ve never been. Community radio will often play your songs and promote your shows getting punters who might buy your cd.

In the end of the four days we had recorded eleven songs and mixed six. We’re going back in March with Mim Jones to help out on fiddle for a few tracks and to record a couple more. We’re aiming now to have the album out in June/July under the working title ‘Padlock and Chain’. Joel Tarling is doing design and art for the package and you can check out his art here.

Yours lurkfully,

Weary H.