I think one of the best places to find new music (or old music that I haven't heard before) is by watching Scrubs. The director and, well, Zach Braff tend to have really great taste (we became aware of Joshua Radin's music from Scrubs).
Anyway, we were watching a couple of weeks ago, and a particularly poignant and incredibly beautiful song came on. Of course, as soon as the episode was over, I was online, trying to find out who it was (note to NBC: you should list the music. Just sayin'.*), but it took a couple days before anyone was posting anything anywhere (anytime, anyhow, blah, blah). Turns out it was a song called "In the Sun" by Joseph Arthur.
It immediately went on my list of "beautiful things that can make me cry", right there next to Joshua Radin's "Closer" (sorry Joshua**). I couldn't get enough of listening to this song.
A couple nights later, some friends were over and we watched "Saved", which is fantastic, and I had seen before, but I had completely forgotten that during one of the emotional scenes "In the Sun" was used. (I swear this all will come to a great point. Really.)
So, just a couple of days ago, I was reading a magazine that mentioned Chris Martin (of Coldplay), and Michael Stipe (of REM) doing a duet of "In the Sun" at a concert in Austin.
Well, I did a bit of investigating, and found out that Michael Stipe has created the In The Sun Foundation in response to Hurricane Katrina, as a way to continue to bring hope and help to those who need it.
In his words:
"The news cycle has moved on and I don't want the public to forget about those who were affected by [Hurricane] Katrina or to believe that everything is fine now," says Stipe, who hails from Georgia and has family roots in the Gulf region. "Things are not fine. The storm is still impacting people's lives in very real ways and many have been left desperate. I want to remind each of us that as humans, and certainly as Americans, it is our responsibility to help those in need."
So Stipe got together with Chris Martin, Joseph Arthur, and a few other artists to record different duets and versions of the song, "In the Sun". They slapped it on an ep, and are selling it on iTunes for $5. All proceeds go to Mercy Corps to aid the Gulf Coast region.
So go. Buy this ep. Seriously, it's only $5. I think that the question of "What can we continue to do after everyone else seems to forget" is an extremely important one. And buying a $5 ep might seem like a small thing, but at least it's something.
And make sure to check out Joseph Arthur's original version. It's beautiful.
*No, NBC doesn't read my blog.
**Neither does Joshua Radin.