To produce and promote musical media that educates listeners and viewers in conservation and sustainability, and to serve as a platform for similar efforts, with an emphasis on rural developing communities.
A world in which the memorable, emotional, and unifying power of music contributes to the healing of the Earth upon which we depend, which is especially important for developing communities living subsistence lifestyles.
In July and August of 2016, Conservation Music joined the Cross Okavango Delta Expedition. A team of 16 artists, poets, musicians, photographers, producers, and ba’Yei polers spent 14 days crossing the Okavango Delta of Botswana in traditional canoes, known as “mekoro” (singular “mokoro”). The Okavango Delta is a world-famous wetland and UNESCO World Heritage Site. The summertime swell caused by rains in the Angolan Highlands, as well as Botswana’s renowned conservation policy, makes this place a veritable Mecca for wildlife year-round.
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The Sotho Sounds are a dynamic traditional group from the small mountain village of Malealea, Lesotho. Fiery, positive energy grooves and shoulders flying during fantastic gumboot dancing are just a few things to look forward to during this Basotho crew’s unforgettable act. Using entirely upcycled instruments made from tin cans, old wire, and inner tubes, this dancing band has an inspiring story and a truly larger-than-life sound. Look for them in our Erosion production from Lesotho, “Ngope la Musi.”
Morena Leraba is a Mosotho musician and shepherd from of Ha-Mojela in Mafeteng district, located south of Lesotho’s capital Maseru. Lebara’s music (especially lyrics) is deeply rooted in Lesotho’s traditional music, poetry, and it’s sub-genre, Famo, which was introduced as early as the 1920s when Basotho men were migrant workers in South African mines. However, the approach in the beat is significantly different as it hurls almost everything from Electro, Electronica, Afro-House, Folk, and Hip-Hop.
Pitso Rah Makhula is a talented conscious rapper, poet, and lyricist from Maseru, Lesotho. A proper mountain rastafarian, his heart is as big as his creative spirit. We had the pleasure of featuring Pitso in our first production ever… “Ngope la Musi,” regarding the late Fanwell Musi who dammed the erosion that plagued his family’s land.
Leshie Lovesong is a Singing Performance Poet, based in Botswana. In 2006, she became Exodus Live Poetry’s Slam Champion, and became a member of the collective itself in 2007. As of November 2007, the young poetess has displayed her craft at every Infinite Word Festival in Gaborone. As an advocate for Environmental Sustainability, the poet has work shopped drama scripts which included her poetry in Angola, Luanda, and Namibia, Rundu, the focus being on the Okavango River.
Pictured above with CM Founder Alex Paullin, the Mosi Oa Tunya band rocked the Zambian airwaves in the golden 1970s. We caught up with them in 2016 with a blend of original members and young apprentices, which made for an interesting lineup! All of the guys in the band are great souls, and we had a great time making “Tushange Isamu,” the Zambian Tree Planting Song!
Progresso is a talented group of musicians who have staked their claim in isolated southeastern Angola. Angola is a country known for poverty, remnants of war, and corruption, all of which we have experienced firsthand. But when the difficult larger picture is boiled down to individuals, the true heart of Angola is found in its wonderful people!
We befriended Afro Jazz legend Bhudaza while filming his collaboration with Brooklyn’s Maya Azucena when she visited Lesotho with her band. During that time, we celebrated his birthday, put on many shows, and adventured to Malealea, where he met our friends the Sotho Sounds. Now we’re looking forward to putting together a collaboration!
Joka is a compassionate and generous soul, and a proud resident of Livingstone’s ghettos. He built his own studio by hand over the course of three years, which he allowed us to use. He sat in with us and dropped a few lines in his distinctive gravelly voice, and told us stories of his troubled past and the hope he found in helping other people beat addiction and avoid hard drugs. A truly inspirational character.
“Sense of fulfillment stems from riding various boards across land, sea, and snow.” When he’s not on a board, Bryan can be found delving into the live music scene around Virginia and the D.C. area. Look for him exploring nature’s abundance with close friends while doing his best to freeze life’s most valuable genuine moments with his camera.
Alex Paullin is a lifelong musician with a degree in Geographic Science and a wide breadth of additional environmental education. He is a talented composer and producer of both audio and video alike, able to direct a project from start to finish and fill any role that’s necessary in the field or in the studio. His travel and field experience with National Geographic serve him well as he chases his dream of sustainable development through music.
Billy is a recording engineer from Harrisonburg, Virginia whose desire is to see humanity take on more sustainable lifestyles, so that future generations may enjoy the Earth’s beauty and resources. A conscious rapper, Billy’s own lyrical themes have transformed from mainly social to environmental. His moniker is StarBaby, look him up!
Cliff is our liaison in the US while our production team roams Southern Africa. He spends many hours in meditation and shreds the electric guitar. Everyone deserves to have an all around good guy like Cliff on their team.
Caitlyn is our jill-of-all-trades, swiss-army admin superhero. She loves playing guitar, cats, crocheting, hiking, and yoga. She is a badass.
Chris has immersed himself in music and visual arts since he was a child. Brimming with creativity and natural talent, his digital production skills are certainly not the least of what he brings to the table at Conservation Music. He likes long walks on the beach.
After returning from life in the deep jungles of Costa Rica and Belize, geographer, environmental activist, and writer Charlie was ready to jump onboard another adventure. While the field team is blazing through the bush of Africa to find our next project, Charlie will be relaying updates to the blog. With his deep passion for travel and learning about global creative arts, Charlie has found a new home at CM.
We love collaborating, sharing, and discussing with like-minded people! We would love to connect on any of the platforms above.
I have heard many English songs on conservation and environmental awareness which did stir up emotions within me. But, listening to one in my own tongue is a totally different feeling. I felt I could resonate with the message and it really touched my heart. It was also worth noting that there were so many languages on it, about five I think; all coming from different part of Zambia. I am so excited that such a message can reach the Zambians not fortunate enough to get educated and learn a foreign language.
Having collaborated with Conservation Music I have personally seen the positive impact of their work on the ground. A unique concept in environmental education and awareness that inspires and energizes local communities to take action. On top of that we’re also gifted with original music!
An excellent initiative! Music is one powerful tool that speaks to our need as humans to connect. And it can only be a cause as big as life itself when people and artists connect to save the planet – that’s Conservation Cusic.
We’re all in this together. Collaboration is essential in improving our relations with the Earth and with each other! The above organizations have supported or planned projects with Conservation Music, directly or otherwise, along the way. We welcome opportunities to work together, so please get in touch!