A bevy of top recording artists has produced a charity compilation album with all proceeds going to the Japanese Red Cross Society. “Songs for Japan” includes 38 tracks, featuring artists from several generations of music. To name just a few—Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, Beyonce, Madonna, U2, Dylan, Shakira, Springsteen, R.E.M, Justin Timberlake, Red Hot Chili Peppers—even John Lennon in a remastered ‘Imagine.’
Do you think “Songs for Japan” will help? Do efforts like these make a positive difference? Americans are split on the answer, according to a Harris poll from 2008. Just under half (45%) say celebrities can make a real difference in the issues they promote, but 51% disagree.
At least part of the judment on “Songs for Japan” will depend on how much money is raised and donated to the Japanese Red Cross. According to Billboard, 25,000 units were sold at $9.99 on itunes on its release date of March 25th. Industry experts say the album could make the top five in this week’s Billboard 200.
Is there a downside to “Songs for Japan”? Some say that efforts like these can actually be a distraction from the real issues. Music can’t change the world. Japan has urgent needs. But the long-term real issues have to do with the wisdom of nuclear energy. Singing won’t help that.
Did you—or would you—buy “Songs for Japan”?
Do you think it will help?
What else could we do in the U.S. to help?
Please, Comment below.
(Originally published at www.OurValues.org, an online experiment in civil dialogue on American values.)