ONE Campaign Agitates with Agit8 Songs

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We’re not sure the world needed another special version of “Sunday Bloody Sunday,” but the recent New York acoustic rooftop performance of the song is incredibly moving and claims emotional currency for this week’s moment in history. It’s part of a new musical movement with a timeless and timely theme.

Today and tomorrow, Northern Ireland hosts the 39th annual G8 Summit, a meeting of eight heads of state from the foremost world nations. The meeting provides a forum in which members can come together to discuss world issues, including food security, nutrition, and sexual violence in armed conflict.

Last week, Bono’s anti-poverty campaign ONE announced the launch of agit8, a music-based campaign to raise awareness for extreme poverty, a campaign that is aimed specifically at this year’s G8 Summit and beyond.

Agit8 features dozens of artists from all periods in modern music, such as Mumford & Sons, Bruce Springsteen, Green Day, Tom Morello, David Crowder, Lone Bellow, Sting, and of course U2, among many others. The campaign seeks to raise awareness for cases of extreme poverty worldwide through performances of classic protest songs. calls on the public to get involved by watching and sharing videos of performances by artists and learning the history behind protest songs and the music around it.

Quite simply, this particular suitcase full of songs is as musically magical and marvelous as any similar collection of similarly iconic anthems previously released—and they are being shared with fans for free via YouTube and Spotify in hopes that those fans might become activists. Just this past weekend, a ONE booth represented for these songs and the campaign in the dust and heat of Tennessee’s Bonnaroo festival.

ONE has made the aggressive goal of eliminating extreme cases of global poverty by 2030 through the influence of agit8. The fast-approaching G8 Summit is the first step toward the goal of ending poverty worldwide. Agit8 and ONE together are pushing for poverty to take the spotlight at this year’s G8 Summit, particularly in regards to poverty, starvation and malnutrition in Africa, but not excluding other similar developing nations where these issues are also at the forefront.

Agit8 hopes to follow in the footsteps of many groups in history who have created change through powerful songs of protest. Time has shown just how powerful music can be in the right hands, and in this turbulent century, the need for powerful music is greater than ever. Maybe with the support of such a large number of artists and the right anthems, 2030 will actually see the extinction of poverty.

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