Tom Morello enlists Shea Diamond, Dan Reynolds, The Bloody Beetroots for BLM-inspired fiery track 'Stand Up'
In times of turmoil and tribulation, it's better to stand up and make your voice count rather than be another passive witness in a crowd of apathy. So in a sociopolitically-charged response to the outrage and solidarity rising from the recent nationwide protests against police brutality and systemic racism, rockstar and social justice activist Tom Morello (of Rage Against The Machine fame) enlisted the help of his fellow artists to come up with a song that would help incite further change. The Grammy award-winning Morello promptly turned to musicians like Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons, the transgender R&B singer/activist Shea Diamond, and producer Bob Rifo aka The Bloody Beetroots to help him realize this vision.
The result of this momentous collaboration is the new human rights anthem 'Stand Up', a potent reflection of diverse groups uniting against racism and discrimination, released via KIDinaKORNER/Interscope Records. The fiery track was co-written by Morello, Reynolds, Diamond, The Bloody Beetroots, Justin Tranter, and Eren Cannata, with lyrics that serve as a radical call to arms. The searing lines include, "Corruption in the blue line ripples out / Eruption in the streets bring the few and proud / Attention when the knees fall to the ground / Silently loud." It also calls out people who are offering nothing more than mere lip service, because concrete action is the only solution to our current social issues - "Stand up / 'Cause you stand for nothing / Just shut up / 'Cause your words mean nothing." You can check out the lyric video for 'Stand Up' below:
Speaking about what sparked the song, Tom Morello, who is biracial, said, "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. It seems that the times, they are a-changin'." He was so charged up by this event that he wanted to further help the cause - "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."
Dan Reynolds also commented on the song's urgency, saying, "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."
Bob Rifo of The Bloody Beetroots also believed in the track’s purpose - "I was in my third month of quarantine and I was waiting for the right opportunity to present itself to reconnect to the world when Tom called me to work on 'Stand Up'. It is during times of turmoil and upheaval that we musicians have the responsibility to accelerate change with a loud and strong message for a better present and future. Today we can change this planet. This is our time. This is our turn."
Shea Diamond also talked about allyship and how she got involved - "When I hear people talking about being allies of the LGBTQ+ community, mainly in the Black and Trans community, it’s almost laughable. We watch them profit from our pain, making these surface-level posts of solidarity – especially in music. When I think about Black Lives Matter and Trans Lives Matter, you don’t get to see any representations of collaborations – many would never share a post, let alone do a song together. So when I heard Dan Reynolds wanted me on his song, I nearly flipped. I wasn’t surprised, though – he’s been so intentional in sharing posts, helping to raise money within our community and more. He really puts the A in ally! This is a proud moment in music history, and I feel honored to be a part of such an important song during this climate... We need to know where everyone stands in the music community, as music is an essential tool that can change the hearts and minds of so many."
All four artists will be donating 100% of the proceeds from 'Stand Up' to the following human rights organizations: the NAACP, the Know Your Rights Camp, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Marsha P. Johnson Institute – all of whom Morello hails for "doing great work combating racism, injustice, and police brutality." In addition to these contributions, KIDinaKORNER/Interscope will donate an amount equal to the artists’ royalties derived from streams of the track for a 3-year period.
You can stream or purchase the stunning new track 'Stand Up' by clicking here.