Category: Europe

Rafael Schäcter and the “Defiant Requiem”

During World War II the Jewish inmates of the Terezin Concentration Camp (sometimes known as Theresienstadt) under the Nazis found a nonviolent way to resist, to claim their own identity and find a place of freedom amid the horrors of the Holocaust. The key was music. The initiator was Rafael Schäcter, a Czech Jewish composer… Read more »

Greta Thunberg

Greta Thunberg is a teenage girl from Sweden.  Since the age of 8 she has been concerned about climate change.  In September 2018 she launched a 3-week long strike from school to protest government inaction on climate change in front of the Swedish Parliament.  Her sign said, “School Strike for the Climate.”  Greta spoke about… Read more »

Yusuf/Cat Stevens

Cat Stevens (stage name for Steven Demetre Georgiou) was a British folk rock singer popular in the late 1960s into the 1970s.  His wrote many songs with values for the heart–compassion, peace, and good relationships such as evidenced by his hit “Father and Son.”  “Peace Train” was a solid hit to land him in this… Read more »

John Lennon

Of course, John Lennon is known most for being one of the Beatles, but his iconic peace songs were produced during his solo career or with the Plastic Ono Band. “Imagine” has become an anthem for the hope of a world without destructive divisions.  It has become more than a song; it is an evocation… Read more »

Cranberries’ “Zombie”

I stumbled across The Cranberries on the NPR Tiny Desk Concerts.  They played their hit “Zombie” from the ’90s.  This Irish band was obviously coming from their own context in a song with strong words about the pain of violence and the deathly numbing of our brains as we silence ourselves: “When the violence causes… Read more »