I heart Michael Franti, the be-dreaded singer who “stands six-foot-six above sea level” and reminds us in his honeyed hip-hop baritone that you can “bomb the world to pieces but you can’t bomb it into peace.” (Go here for samples of his boppable, funakable tunes.)
Thought I would mention this now because Franti and his band Spearhead are hitting the road as we speak, touring wildly and widely this summer–including a stop this coming weekend at the Omega Institute where Franti will teach a workshop called “Power to the Peaceful: A Yoga & Music Retreat For Heart & Hand” with Jivamukti Yoga’s Sharon Gannon and David Life. That he’s being billed with the legendary yogic couple is a big deal.
Franti is also about to release a documentary, “I Know I’m Not Alone,” about his recent travels to Baghdad, the West Bank, and Gaza Strip. It was filmed “with his guitar, video cameras and the intent to experience first hand the human cost of war.” He’s also about to release a new album with Spearhead (July 25th), “Yell Fire!” “The thing that I found when I was in war zones was that nobody wants to hear songs about war,” says Franti on his website. “They want to hear songs about connection to people, and songs about love and life, songs that make them dance.”
Sigh. Swoon. Tall, peaceful, and outraged. Since Spearhead’s not coming anywhere near NYC this summer, will you catch them for me somewhere? In Ireland, maybe? Thanks. You won’t regret it; they always put on an awesome, soul-shifting show.
–by Valerie Reiss (Amy’s on vacation)