Luke Wallace “Us” Album Out Now.
Us is a collection of live songs recorded over a period of 6 months in communities all over the West Coast ofNorth America. In this record are the voices of hundreds of people fighting to protect the planet earth and the systems that sustain them. From rushing rivers to giant cedars, precious farmland and wild salmon, the people along the west coast know what is truly important and worth fighting for. Never have I been so inspired by humanity as I was while traveling and recording these songs. The resiliency and commitment of human beings to stand up for what is right will never be overshadowed.
Each of the songs in Us highlights a different social justice or environmental challenge being faced by communities in my home region.
The north coast of BC is facing serious threats to salmon populations as both the provincial and federal government continue to explore and approve fracked-gas facilities in critical spawning areas (Little Rivers Matter Too).
Further inland, the residents of the Peace River Valley have been fighting to stop the Site C Dam for over 40 years. This dam is in direct violation of Treaty 8 and a number of First Nations are actively opposing the project at a significant cost to their communities (Give a Dam). The farmland that would be destroyed by the reservoir is some of the most fertile in the country.
Where I’m from on the south-west corner of Canada, communities are facing threats from fish farms (Wild), clear cut logging of old growth forests (We Will Not Be Separated) and the expansion of the Kinder Morgan pipeline (Turning the Tide).
Many of the people highlighted in this album have been fighting to protect their homes for decades. The Indigenous people of this area have been battling the oppressive and extractive forces of colonization and genocide for hundreds of years. And yet still, when I travelled to these communities and asked if people would sing with me, I received embracing trust and welcome and it is that acceptance, amongst many other things, that I carry with me as I prepare to share these songs around the world.