Markey, Blumenauer: Musicians “Can’t Get No Satisfaction” from Guitars Made of Illegal Wood
Mick Jagger, Sting, Lenny Kravitz, Bryan Adams, Lana Del Ray join Dave Matthews Band, Willie Nelson, Bonnie Raitt, Jack Johnson, fun., Maroon 5 and many others in defense of Lacey Act.
WASHINGTON (May 23, 2012) – Pledging to keep the instruments they love free from illegally-harvested wood, some of the biggest names in the music industry are taking aim at an effort in Congress to eliminate the law that prevents the importation of wood from protected forests.
Artists including the Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger, Sting, Lenny Kravitz, Bryan Adams, Lana Del Ray and Duran Duran’s Simon Le Bon are just the latest musicians to urge lawmakers, suppliers and craftsmen to protect the law known as the Lacey Act, which ensures that musical instruments are made from safe, sustainable, legally-harvested wood. Illegal logging practices in Madagascar and elsewhere have destroyed forest areas, killed wildlife, and often employ child or slave labor to fell forests.
“A chorus of the biggest names in music is opposing this Tea Party-led effort to eliminate the Lacey Act, which would open the floodgates to increased illegal logging,” said Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Ranking Member of the House Natural Resources Committee. “Killing this vital law would create a new era of ‘blood instruments’ and destroy consumers’ freedom and confidence to buy products that are made from safe and sustainable wood.”
“This incredible list of performers and music legends illustrates the breadth of backing that the Lacey Act has across all segments of society,” said Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.). “They clearly understand that the Lacey Act is not even remotely about persecuting musicians, but preserving the natural resources of the developing world and protecting jobs and industry here at home from fraud and illegal activity abroad. Their support is music to my ears.”
For over a century, the Lacey Act has enjoyed bi-partisan support and been a primary tool in the effort to combat wildlife crime. In 2008, amendments to the act prohibited the import of illegally-logged wood, helping to protect the U.S. logging industry which was losing jobs and a billion dollars a year to illegal logging outfits overseas.
The Lacey Act was the focus of a Natural Resources Committee hearing on May 8, 2012. Adam Gardner of Reverb and the band Guster testified on behalf of the musicians, and offered the pledge to protect the Lacey Act that has now been signed by 40,000 musicians and individuals as evidence of support for the law.
The pledge against supporting blood instruments now includes:
Dave Matthews Band, Bonnie Raitt, David Crosby, Willie Nelson, Jack Johnson, Maroon 5, Jack Antonoff, F.U.N., Jason Mraz, Bob Weir, Barenaked Ladies, Brad Corrigan (Dispatch), Pat Simmons (Doobie Brothers), Ray Benson (Asleep at the Wheel), The Cab, Of a Revolution (O.A.R), Ryan Dobrowski and Israel Nebeker (Blind Pilot), Brett Dennen, Guster, Razia Said, Mick Jagger (Rolling Stones), Sting, Lenny Kravitz, Bryan Adams, Lana Del Ray, Simon Le Bon (Duran Duran), Lily Allen, My Morning Jacket, Jools Holland, Debbie Harry, Richard Bona
Quotes from musicians:
“This pledge is a way of showing lawmakers that musicians stand behind forests, not illegal logging.”
Stefan Lessard, founding member and bassist for Dave Matthews Band:
“Dave Matthews Band has been putting forth many efforts to reduce the environmental impact of our touring for over a decade. There are no other products more directly connected to our music than the instruments we use to play it. We need to keep the laws that are in place to help ensure the wood for these instruments is sourced in a legal and environmentally sound way.”
"Every musician wants to jam on instruments they can feel good about. The Lacey Act helps ensure that our art has a positive impact on the environment rather than contributing to forest destruction.”
Adam Gardner, Guster:
“Our fans don’t want to see us playing a guitar, violin, or piano made from illegal wood, wood stolen from a national park, or harvested using slave and child labor and violence.”
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