Photo Credit: Ben Painter
On Wednesday, alt-folk artist Astral Swans released a new song to celebrate Canada’s legalization of cannabis. “High Hallelujah” is a duet in collaboration with alt-country singer Mariel Buckley.
Matthew Swan (the face of Astral Swans) declares about the song:
“A few months back Mariel and I had spoken about collaborating together on a song. I’m a huge fan of hers, and her gorgeous album Driving in The Dark came out roughly the same time as my record Strange Prison. Mariel and I both enjoy weed so it seemed natural to write and record something for the momentously surreal occurrence of Cannabis Legalization (teenage me still can’t believe it). Weed is an easy thing for me to get behind. It’s introspective, creative, impossible to overdose from, and it rarely if ever causes any aggressive behaviours. It also tends to go very very well with music.”
“A second motivation for this project was to help facilitate a constructive conversation about drugs in general, and the topic of harm reduction specifically. Canada is facing an opioid crisis (nearly 4,000 opioid fatalities in 2017 alone). I have always tried to be transparent about my own explorations with substances such as Cannabis, LSD, Mushrooms, and other psychoactive compounds. Although I have strict personal limits (no cocaine, no cigarettes, or opioids, nothing addictive or ego-inflating), it is not uncommon as a musician in creative circles to encounter a wide range of behaviours ranging from curious exploration to abuse and addiction.”
“As a person who has struggles with mental health, it is very easy to understand how vulnerable people can succumb to addiction while trying to escape the pains of their own psychology. The bottom line is that addiction is a very human problem, and as humans, we need to look out for each other.” For this reason, we will be donating half of all Bandcamp sales to The Portland Hotel Society, an organization that exists on the frontline working with some of the most marginalized groups in Canada.”
To support this stance on the crisis, Astral Swans decided to donate half of the Bandcamp sales to The Portland Hotel Society, a Vancouver based non-profit that provides advocacy, housing, services, and opportunities for the marginalized citizens of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. You can help Astral Swans and The Portland Hotel Society by purchasing the track on Bandcamp.
Hi there! My name is Marie, I am French born and raised, now living in Montreal. I work in Marketing by day, and I’m an avid concert-goer by night. I have always had a passion for photography, and realized that this mixes quite well with my love for live music (the absolute best way to experience music, if you ask me).
You can check out some of my work on my website or on Instagram!