VIDEO PREMIERE: Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars team up with World Food Program USA
The World Food Program USA and Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars have joined forces to bring attention to the urgent issue of global hunger. The partnership between the world-renowned music group and the hunger relief non-profit formally begins today, June 20, 2012 with the public release of the new music video “Big Fat Dog,” a song from Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars latest album Radio Salone that addresses the subject of the divide between the haves and have-nots.
“I am thrilled that Sierra Leone’s Refugee All-Stars have partnered with us in our fight against global hunger,” said Alma Jane Shepard, WFP USA’s vice president for development. “Our partnership with them is even more meaningful given the story of the All-Stars. Their support is very important during this critical time in the Sahel and it is a testament to their tenacity and humanity that they are playing such an active role in giving back.”
The “Big Fat Dog” music video, which was filmed in Freetown, Sierra Leone, was launched on our YouTube channel at 10am EST on June 20th and is being simultaneously released on the WFP USA home page, as well as both our and the band's websites and various social media outlets. To support partnership announcement and video release, the band has made available striking new press photos taken by world-renowned National Geographic photographer Jay Dickman in Freetown this past April. Hi-rez versions of the photos can be downloaded here.
The partnership also includes awareness-building efforts during the band’s current tour. Members of the band will mention WFP USA’s efforts to fight hunger from the stage and will distribute information at the merchandising table after the shows. A full list of tour dates can be found on the artist's tour page.
Formed in refugee camps in Guinea during the brutal civil war in Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars have always sought to bring attention to important social and political issues in Africa and beyond. Their past efforts on behalf of the United Nations Refugee Agency, Amnesty International, The International Rescue Committee and others have demonstrated the band’s commitment to making the world a better place. “It’s been a long struggle out of the war, out of miserable conditions,” notes bandleader Reuben Koroma, “We try to bring out sensitive issues that are affecting the world. It is all of our responsibility that the masses are suffering. We bring our positive messages into the world so we can expect a positive change in the world. And, most importantly, bring about peace.”
Members of Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars returned to Freetown, Sierra Leone after the war ended in 2002 to confront the new challenges facing a country wracked by poverty, lack of economic opportunities and weak infrastructure. The fight against hunger in Sierra Leone is something the band members have experienced firsthand, and it continues to be a major issue at home and across the continent.
For the third time in a decade, drought in the Sahel region of Africa is threatening millions of people with hunger. Meanwhile, conflict in Mali has forced at least 300,000 people to flee their homes, adding to the hunger crisis both in Mali and neighboring countries. The UN World Food Program (WFP) and its partners have launched a regional response to bring food assistance to more than 9 million people in eight countries. Read more about the Sahel crisis here.
World Food Program USA is a nonprofit organization that builds support in the United States to end global hunger. WFP USA engages individuals and organizations, shapes public policy and generates resources for the United Nations World Food Program and other hunger relief operations.
Join the fight against global hunger and support World Food Program USA. Text AID to 27722 to make a $10 donation today!*
Produced by the legendary Victor Axelrod aka Ticklah (known for his work with Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings, Amy Winehouse, Easy Star All Stars, Antibalas), Radio Salone marks the Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars' most musically sophisticated collection of songs to date.
Formed in West African refugee camps, Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars have risen like a phoenix from the ashes of destruction to create this infectious and celebratory sophmore record. Produced by Steve Berlin (Los Lobos, Angélique Kidjo, Michelle Shocked, Rickie Lee Jones and Ozomatli), Rise & Shine was recorded in Freetown, Sierra Leone and New Orleans, Louisiana. Much like the band, the residents of New Orleans know both the bitterness of exile and the redemptive power of music, and the spirit of the Crescent City permeates this uplifting album.
Remixes by DJ Logic, available as digital download only.