A Raised Fist & A Helping Hand

Neil Duncan-Jordan from The Darwins WSO Interview #20

darwins“Music is empowering, inspirational and has the ability to bring people together.”

Neil has managed to land a We Shall Overcome event in the most iconic of locations – Tolpuddle, home of the Martyrs who helped inspire the Trade Union Movement.

Despite the Tolpuddle Martyrs hailing from Dorset, it’s not the easiest place in which to organise an anti-austerity/anti-cuts/anti-government event – but we’re having a go! We’re getting together a range of local performers who are prepared to make a stand against austerity. Being part of a movement is what it’s all about.

Music is all about the expression of ideas and feelings. The songs I write for The Darwins mix the personal with the political because politics doesn’t operate as an abstract idea – it impacts on us every minute of our lives. Not sure I’m that interesting when I come to think about it!

Music is empowering, inspirational and has the ability to bring people together. The idea of a protest movement of poetry and song taking place all over the country on the same weekend is one of the ways in which we are going to build a social movement that is capable of advocating for the sort of society we would like to see, rather than the one we have at the moment.

The ability of people to bounce back when they’ve been defeated inspires me. I don’t think the way to building a better society is going to come about simply by electing someone once every five years. The need for a mass movement that unites around values of humanity, respect, compassion, equality and the re-distribution of wealth is needed now more than ever. As performers, our task is to advocate as best we can for that to become a reality. By supporting movements for change, backing those that are defending the gains we have won over the decades and offering a vision of what a better society could look like.

Hear the Darwins 


Author: Matt Hill Songwriter

Storytelling singer-songwriter and community artist who offers a British take on folk and Americana. Formerly known by the stage name Quiet Loner. Recent projects include a songwriting residency in a museum, an album co-written with people at a homeless project and a stint as a resident musician in a prison.

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