Maybe. But internationally recognized jazz guitarist John Scofield believes that small actions for change can make a difference. “I actually consider it a gift to musicians that we are given the opportunity to make contributions, however nominal, through our everyday efforts,” John tells us.
John has joined with Patagonia to benefit Pesticide Action Network, one song at a time. When a fan, activist or customer purchases John’s song “How Deep” for 99¢ via the Patagonia Music Collective, net proceeds go to PAN.
PAN has worked with Patagonia since 1995 when the outdoor clothing company committed to using organic cotton exclusively as a way to protect the environment and support sustainable agriculture. "Musicians have been interested in partnering with Patagonia on our environmental work for years, but we didn't have the right platform to work together effectively," the company's Rob BonDurant told Huffington Post. "The Music Collective provides us with a way to partner directly with enviro-minded artists and to engage their fans in environmental efforts. It's truly a new model for green giving."
Patagonia's March 1 release of two 11-track benefit bundles ranges from Pearl Jam and Bonnie Raitt to Phillip Glass and Los Lobos, each supporting a different organization. We asked John Scofield why he'd chosen Pesticide Action Network:
Chemical misuse and abuse is rampant worldwide and I suspect this is one of the leading causes of much of the world’s environmental and health woes. This is a problem that has evolved dramatically in my lifetime, and I think our future is in jeopardy as a result. Yet it seems to be a “silent enemy” much of the time. It’s one thing when you see the dramatic results of giant environmental mishaps but there isn’t enough of a voice, not enough oversight for the day-to-day environmental mishaps that are ignored by the general population (and I include myself in that group.) When the television coverage dies down, it must be all better, right?
“It means a lot to me that an organization like PAN exists,” John says. “Your issues hit every home on earth!”
We have an immediate neighbor who has his lawn and trees sprayed several times a year. We receive notification in advance (with the lists of chemicals used and they’re horrific) and try to talk him out of it. He feels that “if it’s legal for the company to use the chemicals, it’s safe." It doesn’t seem to bother him that the owner of the big lawn chain is a leading contributor to legislation that keeps his products from being outlawed. It doesn’t bother him that birds and squirrels don’t get the notices. He doesn’t mind that it floats over to other properties. And we live in a watershed area!
“Our family gives what we can. Thimbles of water thrown on forest fires. If everyone did a little – just a little – the collective results would be huge.”