Rage Against The Machine‘s Tom Morello has debuted ‘Stand Up’, a powerful new protest song inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.
A collaboration with Imagine Dragons’ Dan Reynolds, ‘Stand Up’ sees the pair joined by artist/activist Shea Diamond and producer The Bloody Beetroots.
Describing the track, Morello explained how he was inspired by seeing a Black Lives Matter rally take place in his home town.
“I grew up in the tiny lily white, archly conservative town of Libertyville, Illinois. When I was a kid, someone hung a noose in my family’s garage, there was occasional N-word calling, etc, etc. On June 6 of this year, there was a Black Lives Matter rally and march in that same town that drew over 1,000 people,” he said.
“It seems that the times, they are a’changin’. I was so inspired that night, I reached out to Dan from Imagine Dragons. The Bloody Beetroots and I had conjured a slamming track and within 24 hours Dan had sent back a completed vocal. We got Shea Diamond, a Black transgender woman with a long history of activism, on the track and the coalition was complete.”
Reynolds added: “When Tom reached out to work together with Shea Diamond and The Bloody Beetroots on this track I immediately went up into my room and wrote/sang the chorus and verse that day. This country certainly needs fixing, and I believe it will take people from all sides and colors to fix it.”
All four artists will be donating 100% of their proceeds from ‘Stand Up’ to four organisations: NAACP, Know Your Rights Camp, Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Marsha P. Johnson Institute
Morello has also been an outspoken voice during the recent Black Lives Matter protests, using his social platforms to cut down critics who have questioned his opinions and expertise.
After being accused of being “another successful musician instantly [becoming] a political expert,” Morello deftly pointed out in defending his right to have a political opinion that he happened to be an honours grad in political science from Harvard University.
“One does not have to be an honours grad in political science from Harvard University to recognise the unethical and inhumane nature of this administration but well, I happen to be an honours grad in political science from Harvard University, so I can confirm that for you,” Morello wrote in reply.
The free show was staged after the band’s ‘Killing In The Name’ beat the odds to become the UK’s Christmas Number 1 single in 2009 following a fan campaign.