Rita Ora and Labrinth Join Music Protest After Wiley’s Anti-Semitic Rant | Business


Many big names in rap, folk, rock and pop music, from Rita Ora and Labrinth to James Blunt and the 1975, joined this weekend to take an unprecedented stand against racism.In the wake of the anti-Semitic explosion that led to artist Grime Wiley’s Twitter ban last week, hundreds of top producers, songwriters, singers, music publishers, record companies and musicians, based largely in Britain or America, have agreed to strongly support a drafted document that seeks to clarify an industry-wide position against prejudice and hate speech.

Together, the declaration says, they hope “to demonstrate and express our determination, that love, unity and friendship, not division and hate, must and always will be our common cause.”

The statement, which will also appear as a letter in print and social media in the coming days, is also signed by artists Calum Scott, Leona Lewis, Alexandra Burke, Years & Years, Placebo, Goldie and Jess Glynne, alongside major brands and publishers such as Sony, Parlophone, Polydor, Universal and Warner Chappell Music UK.

Rapper Labrinth signed the statement, which will appear in various media in the coming days. Photograph: Dymond / Thames / Syco / Rex / Shutterstock

A prominent signer, Markell Casey, senior creative director of influential publisher Pulse Music Group in Los Angeles, spoke on Saturday of his commitment to respond. “It is important to show solidarity with our Jewish brothers and sisters. We are all human and we cannot turn a blind eye to racism, ”he said.

Casey, who works with songwriter and producer James Blake, said now is the time to be better informed about our shared history. “Jews and blacks have historically worked together to end discrimination,” he said. “The positive contributions of Jews to black civil rights in the United States and South Africa should not be overlooked.”

The list of signatories is remarkable, not only for the numbers rushed together in a campaign orchestrated in part from the home of A&R leader Alistair Goldsmith, with the help of his wife, former Labor MP Luciana Berger, but also for the wide range of talents that have rallied. Along with young talent such as Clean Bandit, MNEK, and Naughty Boy are established names in the industry like Andy Taylor of Duran Duran, Nile Rodgers and Niall Horan, formerly of One Direction.

Last weekend, Wiley began posting a series of anti-Semitic tweets and then compared the Jewish community to the Ku Klux Klan. The explosion is now believed to have occurred following a recent argument between the rapper and his former manager, who is Jewish.


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