Billy Bragg launches prison campaign at NME bash

The singer takes inspiration from The Clash

Billy Bragg has launched a new campaign which seeks to provide prisons with musical instruments.

The singer launched his Jail Guitar Doors initiative, taken from the 1978 Clash b-side, at the Shockwaves NME Awards 2007 last night (March 1).

He said: “Aware that this year sees the fifth anniversary of the passing of Joe Strummer, I was hoping to be involved in more than just another tribute gig. Hearing the Clash as a 19-year-old had changed my life, so I guess I was looking for a project that underscored the transformative power of music.

“I’m asking musicians, particularly those of you who were inspired by the Clash, to raise the money to provide a prison with enough equipment to help inmates find that same sense of release.”

If you’d like to participate, you can contact Billy Bragg on

For more on the awards and Bragg‘s speech before presenting Enter Shikari with their award go to NME.COM/Awards.