More than 700 members of the U.K. music community, including artists, managers, executives at record companies, agencies, the live music industry, in addition to creatives like songwriters and producers, have come together to sign a letter pledging to combat division and hate.
Citing instances of anti-Semitism, like British rapper Wiley’s recent Twitter rant, islamophobia, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia as well as “systemic racism and racial inequality highlighted by continued police brutality in America,” the signatories declare, “We are at our worst when we attack one another.”
Among the artists endorsing the open letter titled “#NoSilenceInMusic” are The 1975 (pictured), Lewis Capaldi, Lily Allen, Niall Horan, Rita Ora, Violet Skies, Westlife, Years & Years and Yungblud. Top executives from across the industry are also well-represented, including Island Records CEO Darcus Bease, CAA co-head Emma Banks, Warner/Chappell CEO and co-chair Guy Moot, Hipgnosis Songs’ Merck Mercuriadis and Modest Management’s Richard Griffiths. Companies, agencies and management firms attaching their names include the three major label groups, Sony Music, Warner Music and Universal Music Group, along with Capitol, Domino, EMI Records, TaP Music, UTA and X-Ray Touring, as well as songwriter Jimmy Napes and producer Nile Rodgers.
See the full list of signatories on Medium and read the letter below:
We, representatives from the music industry, write to demonstrate and express our determination, that love, unity and friendship, not division and hatred, must and will always be our common cause.
In recent months through a series of events and incidents, the anti-black racists and antisemites, plus those who advocate islamophobia, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia, have repeatedly demonstrated that they clearly want us all to fail. Whether it be systemic racism and racial inequality highlighted by continued police brutality in America or anti-Jewish racism promulgated through online attacks, the result is the same: suspicion, hatred and division. We are at our worst when we attack one another.
Minorities from all backgrounds and faiths have struggled and suffered. From slavery to the Holocaust we have painful collective memories. All forms of racism have the same roots — ignorance, lack of education and scapegoating. We, the British music industry are proudly uniting to amplify our voices, to take responsibility, to speak out and stand together in solidarity. Silence is not an option.
There is a global love for music, irrespective of race, religion, sexuality and gender. Music brings joy and hope and connects us all. Through music, education and empathy we can find unity. We stand together, to educate and wipe out racism now and for our future generations.