03/09/11

Jazz Artists Support Environmental Causes Through Downloads

New initiative from apparel company Patagonia features downloads from artists with proceeds going to the environmental cause of their choice

Patagonia, the apparel company, recently announced a new initiative—the Patagonia Music Collective—in which exclusive tracks will be sold at $.99 each, with the net proceeds going directly to the environmental organizations of the artists’ preference. Among the musicians participating in this program (along with rockers like Pearl Jam, Jack Johnson, Bonnie Raitt and Jon Cleary and Maroon 5) are The Bad Plus, John Scofield and Medeski Martin & Wood.

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The Bad Plus
By Cameron Wittig
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John Scofield
By Dragan Tasic

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“Musicians have been interested in partnering with Patagonia on our environmental work for years, but we didn’t have the right platform to work together effectively,” said Rob BonDurant, Patagonia’s vice president of marketing, in a press release received at JT, “The Music Collective provides us with a way to partner directly with enviro-minded artists and to engage their fans in environmental efforts. It’s truly a new model for green giving.”

The Patagonia Music Collective will launch with 22 tracks bundled into two volumes of 11 tracks each. It will continue as a long-term project, with one new benefit track and three emerging tracks to be released each subsequent week. Exclusive benefit compilation albums will be available at varying intervals at Patagonia stores worldwide.

Jazz is just a small part of the program, which encompasses all genres of music, but because each artist designates the cause of his/her choice, it supports a diverse range of environmental action. “My hope is that fans see their favorite artists supporting the environment and want to get involved themselves,” said Patagonia founder and owner Yvon Chouinard, “The groups these musicians are supporting are the ones that are ultimately going to save the planet. Patagonia’s hopeful other musicians will see that by just donating a song they can easily provide their favorite enviro group with a new stream of financing.”

John Scofield chose to support Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA) with his track “How Deep,” as part of the program. "There are so many good organizations and causes—so much need in the world,” said the guitarist. “Patagonia Music Collective is really a gift to musicians, by providing us with a way to let our work help channel our energies together. Pesticide use and abuse should be a big concern to everyone and I'm tremendously grateful that organizations like PANNA exist and have our backs."

For more information about the Patagonia Music Collective, you can visit their website.

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