As President Barack Obama ushers in a new era of “change” and “responsibility,” young adults are hearing the call to action louder and clearer than ever. While some may think they are too young to make their voices heard on important issues, through the lineup of young and successful bands, and the charity it supports, the Take Action Tour is inspiring teens around the country to start being the “change” we wish to see in this world.
The 8th annual Take Action Tour – composed of the bands Cute is What We Aim For, Meg & Dia, Anarbor, Breathe Carolina and Every Avenue – is making its way across the country in the name of activism among youth.
The tour supports the charity DoSomething.org by contributing 10 percent of proceeds of ticket and CD sales. The charity provides young people who have a vision for a community service project or a charitable organization they want to put in motion with grants of $1,000. This funding allows kids to translate their philanthropic ideas into a reality that will benefit others. So far, the tour has raised $1.6 million in grant money for this cause.
As the bands travel around the country, they carry the message of “change” at each of their shows. “We are singing to you so you can start making people listen to issues that matter to you,” Cute is What We Aim For bassist Dave Melillo told the crowd of screaming teens when the tour stopped at Warehouse Live in Houston on March 6. “We are so lucky to be on this tour because we are promoting more than our music, we are promoting the idea of teens doing good in their communities,” he explained.
The energy for action can be felt in each of the bands. When they are not inspiring teens, they too have ideas of how they would like to change the world. “I would start with making sure children had every opportunity to succeed. Whether it be starting an after school program, or making sure children in poverty have a good education, children are the future leaders so that’s who I would help first,” said Meg Frampton of the pop-indie sister-duo Meg & Dia. Meg & Dia’s sophomore album, “Here, Here, and Here,” came out on March 3.
Fresh out of high school, from Phoenix, Arizona, the band Anarbor literally sees the world through the eyes of teens transitioning into adulthood. “I believe,” Anarbor lead vocalist Slade Echeverria concedes, “that if people were more tolerant of other cultures and beliefs, there wouldn’t be so much violence in the world. I would use a DoSomething.org grant to start a program to promote understanding and education about tolerance and acceptance. If kids are taught to put aside differences and work together, we can finally make progress on issues that matter.” Anarbor’s new album, “Free Your Mind,” debuts March 10.
The tour lasts until April but will hopefully continue to inspire kids into action. “Just because you are young, doesn’t mean you can’t make a difference. Everyone told us we were just another naive high school band who thought we could. Now we have a record deal with Hopeless records and are traveling the country on tour. Do not take no for an answer. Follow your passion and change will follow,” Anarbor guitarist Mike Kitlas said.
If the “Take Action Tour” is coming to a city near you, listen to good music while supporting a good cause. If you cannot make it to a show, you can purchase the 8th Take Action CD, which features songs from the bands on tour, among others. Proceeds from the CD go to Do Something.org as well.
You do not have to be on tour to take action. Choose your message and then make your voice heard! Visit dosomething.org for more information on the organization and takeaction.com for information on the tour and CD.