This free download is to support the work done by the World Health Organization. You can help by donating to their COVID-19 Response Fund at https://covid19responsefund.org
These are, without a doubt, the strangest times most of us could ever have remotely imagined to experience during our lifetime. It does not matter who you are, where you live, or where you come from, this is a situation that we are all going through together, in a manner of speaking, a worldwide uncertainty that has brought forward many things that we used to take for granted: first of all, our health. But we are also realizing the importance of freedom, of human contact, of job security. Right now we’re not able to decide where to go and what to do, everything that we understood as facts of life, like going out to eat, traveling, festivals, even the Olympics, have all gone ‘poof’, disappeared in the wink of an eye, with no discernible end in sight for the time being.
But a time of crisis is also an opportunity to shine as a society, and this is where we can see the true heroes in action, from the sacrifices made by health workers and professionals around the world to the drivers, factory workers and the people behind the counter of supermarkets and grocery stores who toil every day in the midst of a pandemic to provide us with our food and daily comforts. Those are the front lines in the strange battle we’re waging. If it wasn’t from these and many, many other individuals, our situation would be very much worse, so it’s good to keep this in mind long after all this madness is done because we should also take the time to reflect on what is really important and also on the kind of world we want to live in in the future.
Still, a global health crisis does not impair creativity, which is the source of artistic expression, be it in written form, in painting, in film, in music, etc. And this is also vital for our existence, for our mental health, because our minds and souls also need nourishment, especially during times of stress and hardship. We’re all experiencing it right now, because, what would it be like to be forced to stay home without any music, or movies, or books?
Artists have also seen their world turned upside down in the last month, just like everyone else, so this is an unequaled opportunity for them to be closer to the people who follow and admire them. We’re all going through the same thing, each one in their own particular way and according to their particular means, but sharing the same doubts and fears, and artists can help face these feelings by providing us with that much-needed sustenance for the spirit, thus becoming, in their own way, agents for change and improvement of humanity during, and after, this world crisis.
Hernan Cattaneo and Lonya have seized the moment and taken the opportunity to put this situation into perspective in the form of a free download called ‘Rebirth’, a fitting title because it contains words from ‘Lockdown’, a poem written by Brother Richard Hendrick, a Franciscan priest in Ireland, and shared on social media on March 13th. Seeking to shine a light of hope amid the apparent darkness the world is immersed in, Brother Richard writes about the silver linings that can be found among the bad news: the return of nature to the cities, the much-needed cleansing of the air we breathe, the small but meaningful gestures from people who are able to bring laughter and joy to their neighbors, and the solidarity that is born from times of need.
There is hope yet for the world, and Hernan and Lonya set these comforting words on top of a pulsing progressive rhythm, with sounds resembling the sirens caused by the global emergency but also beautiful melodies that give us much-needed solace and respite from all the noise of rumormongers and prophets of the apocalypse. Rebirth tries to encompass the different feelings that are going around the world these days, from mourning to uncertainty to, finally, hope. By including Brother Richard’s poem in their track, Hernan and Lonya give it a purpose and a meaning that goes far beyond anything they may have done in the past, because nobody ever thought that such a thing like this would happen, and it will surely leave a mark in each and every one of us who are going through it. They have created something that helps spread the hope contained in those words, something that tells us to open our eyes and really look at life, at the ‘real’ reality which had been hidden under all those layers of superficiality, nonsense and pollution that we, the human race, had built over the years.
But, like everything else, this is going to pass, and when the day comes, hopefully, we’ll emerge a little wiser and more appreciative of the world and the people that surround us. Maybe this is what will teach us to never take anything for granted again, now that we’ve seen it can be taken away very quickly. There’s always hope.
We also have to be aware that we can contribute in the fight against this disease, as well as in its aftermath, and one way is to support the work of the World Health Organization by donating to their COVID-19 Response Fund here – – https://covid19responsefund.org