PR: Hip-Hop Artists Use Animated Video to Protest Iraq War
International Roster of Hip-Hop Artists Protest U.S. Occupation of Iraq With Cutting-Edge Animated Music Video
For immediate release:
January 13th, 2008
‘Sorrow of the Soldier’ music video available at http://www.maudevintage.com/soldier
Hip-hop artists from the US, UK, Japan and Europe have collaborated on a one-off music video to protest the continued presence of US Soldiers in Iraq, released on the internet today with an eye for further broadcasts on cross-channel digital media platforms.
The track, ‘Sorrow of the Soldier’ by US Rapper Mark Prysler, tells the story of Lucas, a working-class man who runs out of options in his own life and sees the army as an attractive means of escape. Upon deployment he finds the reality of the Iraq war is far removed from the fantasy sold to him by the Bush administration. The story is an analog for the experiences of many young men and women fighting in Iraq today and the lyrics call for direct action from the government. The video by UK Animator James Harvey uses a blend of cutting-edge digital and traditional hand-drawn animation to illustrate the story. While it looks expensive, the video was produced on a tight budget on a £500 ($1000) laptop computer.
Uniquely, the video has been simultaneously released in several different versions, each with a separate audio track by a different global collaborator. Each remix artist was asked to choose a ‘flavour’ to represent themselves on the website. The standout ‘mint’ version features production from Holland’s DJ Donor, who has remixed artists such as Pharrell Williams, while ‘Cheese’ flavour is remixed by Takashi Otagiri, the president of Tokyo Fun Party, a Japan-based dance music collective. More remixes are to be added to the website over the coming month from hip-hop artists from France, Germany, and both east and west coast America.
“With so many different artists coming together from so many different backgrounds we’re able to get our message out to as many people as possible, and show the world how far-reaching and widely-held this sentiment is” says Harvey. A line from Prysler’s original rap, omitted from the video but written in text on the website, has become a statement of intent for the global collaborators: ‘this video is dedicated to the soldiers overseas fighting for our “freedom”, or whatever the administration calls it. We hope you come home soon.’
The Video is available as a hi-res download from http://www.maudevintage.com/soldier and can also be found on Youtube.
About The Great White Mark
Mark Prysler is the top unsigned hip-hop artist in his native Washington and is well known in the local hip-hop community whether as a radio personality or through making and releasing rap music. His direct, socially-conscious lyrics voice a point-of-view under-represented in mainstream hip-hop.
About James Harvey
James Harvey is a designer and animator born in Stafford, England who has worked for clients such as BBC2 and Google as well as drawing concept art for videogames, band flyers and even tattoos. This is his first music video.