Sarah Jane Morris and Antonio Forcione were both kind enough to chat for a little while after their opening show at The Edinburgh Festival Fringe about how their new collaborative album “Compared To What” and the current show came about, and this article is a summary of those comments.
Sarah Jane and Antonio Forcione have known one another and respected each other’s work as artists for many years, but unfortunately touring schedules across the world have always meant that the opportunity to work on a collaborative project just never happened. That fortunately changed recently as a window of opportunity opened up in their respective schedules and this new album and show is the result.
Touring across the world and extensively in Europe has given both performers not only an insight, but first hand exposure, to probably the greatest disaster of the 21st century – the almost biblical scale humanitarian crisis of refugees from war zones in many countries attempting to reach safety wherever they can and by whatever means they can find to get there. The scale of the crisis and the humanitarian cost not only in lost lives, but the suffering for those who have survived is so huge that it actually dulls most of our senses to try to even accept it. While most of us though may watch from the comfort of our safe homes the tragedy of not only those fleeing overland, but those losing their lives to the seas as boats sink into the cold depths with their families and friends, some people like Sarah Jane Morris and Antonio Forcione are moved enough and motivated enough to make their stand against all of this and through their words and music highlight the plight and the scale of the crisis to as many people as they possibly can.
Both artists quickly found a common voice in this project and the new music and words formed quickly for this project, and that is no surprise as both are deeply affected by what they see happening around them and simply have to let those emotions out in some creative form to play even a small part to try and change things. Antonio also felt that he was at the right age for this project too as sometimes in your youth you can be too absorbed in yourself to be aware of and consider the wider larger events that are happening in the world around you.
Sarah Jane and Antonio are in this project two halves that fit perfectly. Antonio recognised from the start that, apart from being a hugely gifted songwriter, Sarah Jane was not simply a singer who sang the words, but a hugely emotional performer who could breathe life into words with a powerful stage presence and performance. Sarah for her part recognised that in Antonio there was an immensely gifted musician with that quite rare ability to play not only with his fingers but with his heart and soul.
This new album and the tour both carry very simple messages from both performers at their core...Not In My Name and Stop The Bombing. It doesn’t matter what side you are on, who you are fighting...just “Stop the Bombing”.
Sarah Jane and Antonio are also collecting funds at the end of each show for “Side By Side” Refugees
They have a website at http://www.sidebysiderefugees.org/
Also, here is our review of their concert
Article by Tom King