There is much more to music than Number Ones, X Factor and what Miley Cyrus has decided not to wear this week. Music touches the lives of millions, and the good people at War Child understand the power of music in connecting people with their work and use it to highlight the atrocities children and their families are going through in war torn communities and nations around the world.
War Child has a history steeped in music. They answered the call for help during the conflict in Bosnia in 1995, collaborating with artists like; Oasis, Blur, Radiohead, The Stone Roses, Portishead, The Manics and Massive Attack. Plus contributions from Paul McCartney and Paul Weller to record an album in just 24 hours – creating the most legendary charity album of all time.
From that point War Child and music have been synonymous, and over the last 20 years War Child have collaborated with the some of the most established artists and music organisations and supported some of the best up and coming talent, many of whom are now household names, all with the purpose of aiding children around the world whose lives have been torn apart by a war they did not start.
With that ethos in mind War Child are continuing to develop and Tune Up Festival is large part of that. I spoke to War Child’s Deputy Director of Music and Entertainment Jim Benner to see what makes Tune Up Festival different from their previous work.
“TuneUp is an exciting new series of events for War Child. Where Army of You was centered around one London show, TuneUp is 4 unique line-ups in 4 cities across the UK: Brighton, London, Manchester and Edinburgh. It’s a new partnership with Tune Hotels who are expanding across the UK and both War Child and Tune have ambitions to make TuneUp bigger each year.”
For anyone with their ear to the ground when it comes to upcoming artists, we can see that Tune Up Festival’s line up is sporting some exciting new names in music with the likes of; Yuck, King Charles, Swiss Lips and Bwani Junction spread across the four dates and venues. I asked Jim why War Child chose these acts to play the first ever Tune Up Festival.
“All of the acts on the TuneUp bill are great emerging artists. I spoke to experts in the music industry to get their advice about which acts were breaking through. It’s not only bands with great songs, but also a good team of people behind them like managers, agents and record labels. I don’t have a crystal ball, but having done similar events in my promoting past I put together bills where the bands stand a great chance of breaking through to the mainstream in the next 12 months. Where possible, we had bills made up completely of local talent. All of the acts ‘get’ what War Child does and I’m very grateful for their support.”
Tune Up kicks off tonight (18/11) in Brighton with Yuck, Swiss Lips & Champs before heading to London (19/11), Manchester (20/11) and Edinburgh (23/11). They are all going to be excellent nights and I don’t need to express the importance of the work War Child do in these communities.
Tickets are still available from War Child’s Website and I urge everyone who can to go. If you can’t attend, that doesn’t mean you can’t find out all you can about War Child’s work and how you can help children in war torn nations around the world by spreading the word, donating or getting involved.
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