In 2003, Parties4Peace started as a dream project to raise awareness about important global issues and fundraise for grassroots projects. Ten years later, P4P has supported local communities and organizations around the world in their efforts towards sustainable development, disaster relief, education and equality. Using funds raised through events and donations from artists and other members of the dance music community, Parties4Peace has implemented international initiatives like AIDS education in Ghana, building a community center in El Salvador, environmental awareness education in Cambodia, protecting the nature of Patagonia (Chile), music education in Caracas (Venezuela), art education in Bangalore (India), photography workshops in Argentina, outreach and education for communities in Kenya, protecting the ocean and natural resources in Okinawa (Japan), and disaster relief work in Japan, Chile, and New York.
In every Parties4Peace production, organizers and artists donate their time and talent. With lineups that have included artists like Seth Troxler, Jay Haze, Pier Bucci, Argenis Brito, Alexi Delano, Thugfucker, MC & Hammer, Eric Cloutier, Francisco Allendes, John Selway, Dandyjack, Butane, Felipe Venegas, Camea, Taimur & Fahad, No Regular Play and numerous talented Japanese and South American artists, P4P makes sure not to disappoint on the music front either. Everywhere from Tokyo (Japan), New York City (USA), Caracas (Venezuela), Santiago (Chile), and Miami (USA) have been hosts to Parties4Peace.
This month, Parties4Peace celebrates its tenth anniversary with parties in multiple cities, commencing with an event in Tokyo on November 1st, featuring producer Jay Haze (Fuckpony/Contexterrior/Red Dot Relief) and local talent at Club R Lounge.
Here is P4P’s special interview with Jay Haze aka Fuckpony. Enjoy!
1) How did you first get involved with Parties 4 Peace and their initiative to promote a culture of peace through dance and music ?
It all started once I really got into organizing independent efforts for different situations in the world – naturally that sort of work gravitated towards others who are also trying to make change. So as I was visiting Tokyo some years back, I met Emilie McGlone and she invited me to see what the Peace Boat is up to. Once I arrived in the headquarters I was so impressed and inspired, that I said to myself I have to figure out a way to work with them. The values they hold are ones that I whole heartedly share- dance music is such a powerful culture with many possibilities for reach of influence, it’s really amazing. Over the years it keeps growing, and with this growth are new ways of getting positive messages out.
2) You traveled onboard the Peace Boat from Peru, through the Panama Canal and on to Colombia as a guest speaker, please tell us about your experience and what inspired you to join their global voyage.
My experience was simply amazing. I always wanted to do work like this, I always dreamed of it- and when Peace Boat helped me make it possible, well what can I say? A dream came true!What inspired me to join the voyage was the fact that this specific voyage addressed many issues close to my heart. I have always been anti nuclear energy and weapons- and of course I am super interested to reach out to communities in the world living differently and learn from them, not only the Japanese culture, but also the cultures of where we visited. The staff at Peace Boat are an inspiring hard working bunch, and I will be forever grateful for this chance, and look forward to a day when I can come back on board!
3) In March, 2011 there was a devastating earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan. In response to this, you co-founded the support organization Red Dot Relief, a project in collaboration with Seth Troxler and Isis Salvaterra. Please tell us about the purpose of Red Dot Relief and how it has impacted local communities.
Well, the purpose of red dot relief was to use the media and word of mouth to raise awareness about the seriousness of this disaster, to use it as a catalyst for bringing people together and to hopefully bring about change in a time where social media was more of a way to promote yourselves and spread random nonsense. It seemed at the time like people were just waiting for something more to express. We did a nice word of mouth campaign with stickers, t-shirts and events in many places in the world. I think the events that we organized for this initiative were especially significant because we were able to bring people together in large numbers for a truly positive reason, and this was celebrated. So in a sense, the impact it had on local communities was in my opinion that people realized that there are ways to come together in harmony to raise awareness for situations needing it.
4) We know you love Tokyo! Please tell us why you are excited to travel to Japan in November and what you hope to do during your time in Asia.
Well, Tokyo feels like a 3rd home to me because I have spent lots of time there, and really have come to know the culture and nature. One of my favorite parks in the world is there (Yoyogi park) and I just have such a special connection with the earth there. When I come to Japan in November I am hoping to reconnect with that feeling, reconnect with the people, and of course raise more awareness to the ongoing struggle for clarity with the current nuclear meltdown and its impact on the state of the world, and the effect it will have on the future.
5) This year, Parties4Peace is celebrating their 10 Year Anniversary – do you have any message for other artists around the world who might like to participate in their events or join the Peace Boat for the MUSIC & ART PEACE ACADEMY (MAPA) ?
My message to all artists out there is to get involved with something that matters. Art is there to help bring about needed change. The line between design, advertising and art is so blurred these days. Many artists compromise their art for monetary reasons (which is pure corruption), in fact this is probably the biggest problem art faces right now, so to get involved with causes and use your creativity to help raise awareness will not only further your own art but it can change you as a person from the inside. I can only say it did this for me 🙂
6) Tell us about your current music projects and non-profit adventures.
I would just like to add that I am constantly trying to connect with new people, new artists and new technology to help further the message of global peace and respect to the earth and our impact on it. At the moment, I am very focused on red dot relief and of course my mind is racing with ideas for MAPA which is an idea I was close to since the inception. I will continue to show my support for Peace Boat, and all positive initiatives in the world looking to bring about a new consciousness. Finally, we are all tiny parts in this big organism known as earth, and we all have an effect. It is time to start caring more about the bigger picture and less about the individual.