Together In Hope – Against The Wind [Interview]

Describe your sound in 3 words

Touching, Inspiring, Powerful

70 Artists from 12 countries over 16 months. Tell us a few things about the new song “Against The Wind”

Against The Wind is the result of a collaborative music project called Together In Hope. The project brought together a community of artists and producers from around the world to record the single as a message of solidarity and hope for communities across the Global South most negatively impacted by the tide of COVID-19 that has swept across the globe.
All the musicians and production team generously gave their time to create the track and all proceeds will support the In Place of War COVID Emergency Relief Fund. The resulting song is a soothing and uplifting blend of classically-inspired contemporary pop with some sections rapped by artists who brought their own lyrics to their parts of the track.

What was the biggest challenge in making this song?

Recording a song during a global pandemic is a challenge in itself. When that song features contributions from nearly 70 artists in 12 countries, most recording remotely from their homes, the challenge was really blending all those different recording environments into a unified sound that reflected the message of Against The Wind. After 16 months of recording and production we’re really pleased we made the effort to create something all the artists and producers truly believe in.

Artists and people who have influenced and inspired you?

First, the fundamental reason for the song to be made was for marginalized communities in areas of conflict in the Global South suffering from
the most adverse effects of COVID-19. Thinking of people in need of help was our first influence and inspiration and how we started this long yet valuable music journey to give hope through heartfelt support and donation.
Secondly, Beethoven. The line from Chorus Symphony, “All people become brothers wherever your gentle wing resides,” aligns with the core of the song that emphasizes the value of togetherness and solidarity in these uncertain times.
Lastly, working with global artists was an inspiration. Talented artists of different genres and countries voluntarily brought their voices, time, and commitment, which definitely inspired the producers and artists in completing the 16-month recording journey. Plus, their distinctive voices and different vocal styles influenced the song production in mixing and mastering.

How Important are political statements by music artists? Can music have an impact on politics?

Against The Wind was not produced for political purposes, but we thought it could play a meaningful role in drawing people’s attention toward those who are politically marginalized. Music is a universal language that unites people across cultures and communities, inspires and comforts people in times of need and sadness.

What needs to be changed in the music industry?

In a context where music is becoming more provocative visually and sonically, Against The Wind aims to emotionally touch listeners’ hearts through its mellow sound and soft style. Also, we hope various artists come together and create more works of art to bring positive influence to the world, showing how the universal power of music has a wide-ranging impact.

The track closes with Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. What is the idea behind this choice?

In the initial stages of creating the concept for the song, we met with a world-renowned Korean-European pianist, Won Jae-Yeon. While performing in Germany, he listened to the Against The Wind demo and came up with a brilliant idea. He thought of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, The Chorus, which begins with a scale similar to the demo, and he suggested rearranging our song’s intro to something based on Beethoven’s symphony. April 2020, just as the production of Against the Wind began, was an also celebratory year – the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth. We felt that the lyrics of the original Chorus Symphony, translated as, “All people become brothers wherever your gentle wing resides”, carry the message of solidarity and support, which is the DNA of the Together In Hope project. So, the intro was rearranged and played by Won Jae-Yeon on a Steinway piano, which is more than 100 years old, planting deep meaning in the music.

Thank you!

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