|The Solidarity Idol song quest is a hunt for a new anthem for working people. The big prize? Well, that would be fame and glory. Not to mention immortality. (Hey, if it's money you're after you wouldn't have won anyway). At the risk of confusing you, we're also running a poll for the best workers' song of the last 50 years. You can cast your vote for the latter competition here.
1] What's the preferred style for this new anthem?
Accent on New. Then, kind of... you know... Anthematic. Well duh. Other than that it can be anything you like: any genre, any style, any language, any which way. And you can enter two songs max, and/or send updates or replacements.
2] What about cover versions?
One problem: all entries need to be public domain. That doesn't mean that it can't be a cover version; it just means that you need to get full permission first from the owner of the song.
3] Can I send a song by someone else?
Same as above. If we receive the owner's permission, it's fine.
4] We can't think of lyrics. Any ideas?
Want us to see if there are any poets in the network who'd be willing to help you? We'd be glad to put word out, if asked, Ditto if you're short a sousaphonist, or whatever.
5] How do I/we enter a song?
You can email it (mp3 format preferred) to email@example.com. Alternative contact details are here.
6] Who decides the winner?
Two groups -- members of the network and the general public -- each get 50% of the votes.
7] When's the decision made?
The competition closes when we have entries from 20 artists.
||Featured Artist #4: Jerzy Dymny
Jerzy "Smokey" Dymny started playing publicly in the 80s, while organizing demonstrations with ACT for Disarmament, a peace group in Toronto. He played at demos and hosted the “Fallout Shelter” coffeehouse. Since then he's played strikes, rallies, picket lines, labour conventions, anti-poverty events, and anti-nuclear events, and has written over a hundred songs. As well as two entries in our Solidarity Idol competition (above right), he also leads song-writing workshops, and wrote four collaborative songs with the homeless community at the “No Place Like Home” conferences in Toronto. In the late 80s he compiled the first Canadian Industrial Workers of the World “little red songbook”. The songbook hit the streets on May 1, 1990 when the Toronto Wobblies (IWW) spread the last of Joe Hill’s ashes at the Sears picket line on Jarvis Street and at the May Day celebrations at Trinity Bellwoods Park.
A recent project was in response to a call from the Christian Peacemakers group in Toronto. He helped organize six week-end performances to raise money to help free C.P.T. members who had been abducted in Baghdad.
In 2006 he held his first CD release concert in Toronto, backed by Kevin Barrett (guitar) and John Millard (cittern). For the west coast release the back-up was Moe Davenport (electric guitar), Steve Moore (drums) and Jaron Freeman-Fox (fiddle).
Each year he celebrates May Day at the Free Times Café, and will play any other political gigs that come up.
Smokeydymny.ca for free downloads.