Social Action Rocker Merv Pinny is no stranger to the music scene, having grown up in a musical family on a farm in the Waikato region of Zealand. Pinny started playing music at the ripe old age of 10 years and was playing in a band with his older brothers only two years later. So what inspired his latest music and how has it got so much attention internationally? “I was watching the refugees, the wars, the terrorism, and how desperate people are to leave their own countries. How desperate do things have to be before you jump on a plastic lilo and set off across the sea?”. Then he saw an interview with actress Angelina Jolie – a UN special envoy for refugees – calling on governments, and ordinary people, to do more to help. And he realised there was something he could do.
Using social media, Pinny’s songs and videos started gaining a huge amount of interest prompting radio stations across the US to take notice, which has created a massive snowball effect across radio and the internet. It has also prompted young people caught up in conflicts to send the singer heart-felt emails.
“Some young people from these countries have told me, ‘This is just like my life’. They’ve really jumped on it. They got excited that someone was writing songs and actually talking about it. I think a lot of them felt that nobody cared,” he says.
A song isn’t going to silence any guns on its own but at least he feels like he’s doing something. “Maybe it’ll help, but stopping the wars would be the best thing that could happen for those kids.»