Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy Discusses Donating 5% Of Royalties To Racial Justice Organizations On ‘CBS This Morning’
Shortly after George Floyd was killed in late May 2020, Tweedy issued a statement: “The modern music industry is built almost entirely on Black art,” he wrote. “The wealth that rightfully belonged to Black artists was stolen outright. There should be an industry-wide plan to address this enormous injustice.”
Jeff now continues to use his platform to fight for racial justice, announcing on CBS that the first organization that five percent of his royalties will go to is I Grow Chicago which operates in the Englewood neighborhood in Tweedy’s native Chicago and whose mission is to “grow Englewood from surviving to thriving through community connection, skill building, and opportunity,” as per I Chicago Grow Chicago’s website.
“I don’t have all the answers, Tweedy told CBS This Morning. “I just want to do my part.” Pertaining to five percent of his royalties going to racial justice causes Tweedy said, “In all honesty, [it] isn’t a whole lot of money. The point would be that it would be multiplied by thousands of people at my level.”
Tweedy was also asked if he considered his cause a form of reparations. “Yeah,” he said. “It’s a tricky word to use for some people. We have a large segment of our population that worked to build this country and were never paid for it. That needs to be repaired.”
The interview also highlights Black artists like Little Richard and Bo Diddley whose music has brought in millions of dollars for white artists without the originators of the art receiving any compensation. Tweedy hopes that more artists and especially record labels and publishing companies will come on board with his plan. “I think I was hoping that someone much more famous than myself would say ‘that’s a decent idea, let’s get the ball rolling.’ I really want to remain hopeful about this, and, at the same time, I have to be honest that I wish it was being taken more seriously.”
Watch Jeff Tweedy’s entire interview with CBS This Morning below: