28/03/2011 | by Alex Dick-Read
Patagonia Music Launches March 1 with Pearl Jam, Bonnie Raitt, Philip Glass, Jack Johnson and More
Patagonia Inc., the environmentally minded apparel company, has teamed with some of today’s top artists, representing a range of genres, to form the Patagonia Music Collective. The Patagonia Music Collective will launch in the United States on Tuesday March 1, 2011 at www.patagonia.com/music.
Exclusive tracks will be sold at $.99 each, with net proceeds going directly to the environmental organizations of the artists’ preference. Musicians on board thus far include Pearl Jam, Jack Johnson, Bonnie Raitt and Jon Cleary, Maroon 5, Philip Glass, Zac Brown Band, moe., The Bad Plus, Blitzen Trapper, Mason Jennings, John Scofield, Piers Faccini, Switchfoot, Brett Dennen, Sun Kil Moon, Umphrey’s McGee, Ben Solee, RaRa Riot, Spoek Mathambo, Taj Mahal, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Drive By Truckers, Bobby Long, String Cheese Incident, Ki: Theory, Moondoggies, Vusi Mahlesela, Disco Biscuits, O.A.R., Ziggy Marley, Los Lobos, Dawes, Abigail Washburn, Big Head Todd & the Monsters, Brandi Carlile, Laura Jansen, Medeski Martin & Wood, Robert Randolph and the Family Band and many more.
“Musicians have been interested in partnering with Patagonia on our environmental work for years, but we didn’t have the right platform to work together effectively,” notes Rob BonDurant, Patagonia’s vice president of marketing, “The Music Collective provides us with a way to partner directly with enviro-minded artists and to engage their fans in environmental efforts. It’s truly a new model for green giving.”
The Patagonia Music Collective will launch with 22 tracks bundled into two volumes of 11 tracks each. It will continue as a long-term project, with one new benefit track and three emerging tracks to be released each subsequent week. Exclusive benefit compilation albums will be available at varying intervals at Patagonia stores worldwide.
The collective encompasses all genres of music from pop to roots, reggae to indie rock, jazz to alt-country, and supports a similarly diverse range of environmental action. By featuring previously unavailable material from both established and rising artists, the Patagonia Music Collective aims to engage a diversity of fans directly in environmental giving.
“My hope is that fans see their favorite artists supporting the environment and want to get involved themselves,” notes Patagonia founder and owner Yvon Chouinard, “The groups these musicians are supporting are the ones that are ultimately going to save the planet. Patagonia’s hopeful other musicians will see that by just donating a song they can easily provide their favorite enviro group with a new stream of financing.”
“Any endeavor that combines great music with fund raising for quality environmental organizations gets my attention,” said Bonnie Raitt. “When Patagonia approached us to be involved we were excited to team up. I’ve been a supporter of Earth Justice for almost a decade, because, as their slogan states, ‘the Earth needs a good lawyer.’”
As the latest in an extensive series of initiatives Patagonia has lead to further environmental action and awareness, the Patagonia Music Collective builds upon the success of such programs as 1% for the Planet (a coalition of 1400+ companies that pledge to give 1% of their annual sales to enviro organizations) and the Conservation Alliance (a coalition of business that grants 100% of its member dues to grassroots environmental groups). The Patagonia Music Collective is not a record label, nor is it simply a downloads-for-charity campaign. It is a perpetually evolving program that allows musicians to direct money to specific environmental causes while giving listeners rare access to previously unavailable music. Most importantly the program fosters an artistic and political exchange between the passionate communities of musicians, fans, environmental advocates, and Patagonia’s own loyal, socially-conscience customer base.
“I have been excited to work with Patagonia since I traveled down to Chile a couple years ago to work on music for the film 180° South,” explains Mason Jennings. “Hanging out with Yvon Chouinard (Patagonia founder/owner) and other environmentalists and hearing how they think about life and the work that Patagonia is doing to give back to the environment was truly inspiring.”
The tracks will be available at www.patagonia.com/music, through a dedicated iPhone app and a web widget at participating artists’ websites. Fulfillment will be handled by iTunes. The program will roll out internationally in Japan, the UK, Canada, and elsewhere this June.
Patagonia, with sales last year of over $333M, is noted internationally for its commitment to product quality and environmental activism. Incorporating environmental responsibility into product development, the company has, since 1996, used only organically grown cotton in its clothing line. In Fall 2011, the company’s entire product line will be recyclable thorough its Common Threads Recycling Program. The company also advocates corporate transparency through its interactive website, The Footprint Chronicles, which outlines the environmental and social footprint of individual products. Patagonia was featured as The Coolest Company on the Planet on Fortune Magazine’s April 2007 cover.