From now through the end of 2017, I am pledging 100% of the digital download sales of my new single “Connected,” to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. Written by my friend, Steve Callif, “Connected” is the perfect song for this kind of project. I am honored that Steve and the team at Atticus Records have gotten behind this project to help with the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.
“Connected” is the closing track on my upcoming album release, The Soul of Everything, which will be released on Atticus Records in early 2018. I recorded it earlier this year well before Hurricane Harvey at EAR Studio in Austin with Stephen Doster producing, playing guitars and leading the band, including Dony Wynn on drums, Kevin Lovejoy on keys, and the late, great George Reiff on bass.
Steve Callif has written a brilliant song and I am honored to have had the chance to record it. “Connected” is a perfect and timely song for these times we are experiencing. It is an inspiring call for unity, asking tough questions and appealing to us all to go beyond our perceived differences and find that place of common ground where we are all connected. Besides the good we might achieve through the pledge of the sales proceeds, I am looking forward to the song itself finding an audience as we move forward with this hurricane relief project. It is a great song, and I am grateful that I get to add it to my catalogue of songs.
In addition to the pledge of the “Connected” digital download sales through the end of the year, for the first 90 days of its release in 2018, 50% of all sales from The Soul Of Everything album will also be pledged to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. Additionally, Atticus Records is also pledging 50% of all CD, vinyl and digital album sales of both of my previous albums, Strawberry Moon and Soul Diving.
I invite you to help me and Atticus Records heal some of the many lives that were devastated by Hurricane Harvey. Before I moved to Austin, I had mainly lived most of my life in either Houston or the Beaumont-Port Arthur area. I have friends and family members from Rockport to Orange, who lost their homes and possessions, including several of the musicians, artists and supporters that have been integral in bringing Atticus Records to life.
So, this is personal for me and for everyone here at Atticus Records. My own hometown of Nederland, which borders both Beaumont and Port Arthur, received 64.5″ inches of rain, a new U.S. record. The damage to the entire Golden Triangle area was mostly from flooding, rather than the hurricane force winds that decimated Gulf Coast towns like Rockport, where Harvey originally made landfall. So, the damage is not as visible, but it is no less a crisis for the lives that have been turned upside down.
I was back home last week for the first time since the hurricane, and it was eerie. People’s entire lives, possessions and a good bit of their homes piled up on their front lawns awaiting trash pickup. The same story at house after house, both sides of the street for blocks and blocks at a time. The trash pick up alone is going to take months and months before all of it is picked up for disposal. Meanwhile, families are left to begin the long, slow process of recovery, which goes on for years long after the hurricane is gone.
Since the damage was mostly from flooding, you can’t necessarily see it from the outside of someone’s home or business. If it weren’t for the huge piles of trash at the front curb, you might not even know Harvey had been there. The real crisis is inside the gutted houses that have been stripped of sheetrock and insulation down to the studs, with all of the carpet and anything else that had gotten soaked from the record rainfall ripped up from floors and thrown onto the trash heap in the front yard. It’s going to take years for the healing and recovery to be completed.
I have always believed that music should be good for something besides just listening pleasure. Using my music to help raise money for relief efforts is one of the ways I can put that mission statement into action. Recovery from a natural disaster the size and scope of Harvey will require a massive effort, and I pledge to use my music to do what I can, where I can to help along the long road to recovery.
In the scope of things, this may seem like a small gesture, and it may be. However, that is how the job ultimately gets done. It takes a lot of small gestures from a whole lot of people over the long haul to bring it all home. Starting with the pledge of digital download sales of ‘Connected’ to the effort, I begin to do my part.
Your part in this small effort is two-fold. First, purchase the digital download at the Atticus Records Online Store for only 99 cents. That’s less than a buck. After nominal payment processing fees, 100% of sales proceeds will be dedicated to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.
The second small action you can take is to simply share this article with your friends and family to help spread awareness of “Connected” and our Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. So, if this message finds you, I invite you to purchase the digital download of ‘Connected’ right now for only 99 cents. Then, while you’re enjoying the music, share the link to this article and encourage your friends to do the same.
Buying good music that brings pleasure to your life, while also contributing to hurricane relief efforts, is one of the small actions that you can take today to make a difference. Each little step, each small gesture keeps us moving the ball forward. That is how recovery will ultimately be achieved. We hope you will join our efforts and let others know about it as well.
For me, and everyone else at Atticus Records, this is just a first step in a long-term journey and we will be looking for other opportunities to help as events unfold, including live performances that support relief efforts.
Visit the Atticus Records Store right now and help us bring relief to those who have been devastated by Hurricane Harvey.