“Freedom of expression is important to anyone and we must fight for it. I am supporting the work of Freemuse and I’m here to help,” says singer Manu Chao in a comment to the current Freemuse campaigns for persecuted and imprisoned musicians and composers worldwide.
Headlining the Mela Festival in Oslo 25 August, Manu Chao excited thousands of enthusiastic fans in the beautiful setting of the Oslo Harbour-front.
The festival featured Freemuse Award Winners Ferhat Tunç and Ramy Essam, who not only performed but also discussed freedom of expression in a public talk with Freemuse Programme Manager Ole Reitov.
The support from the world-famous musician Manu Chao to his colleagues was very positively received by the Kurdish-Turkish singer Ferhat Tunç, who faces two years imprisonment in Turkey for his work a political songwriter and activist.
Concerts banned Ramy Essam, whose song ‘Irhal’ (‘Leave’) became the anthem of the Egyptian revolution at Tahrir Square, told the audience that “his concerts are still being stopped and banned, and very little if any progress has been made in Egypt”.
Singing the world famous song during the talk session Ramy Essam dedicated the “leave the power” song to the Muslim Brotherhood
Important role for rappers Listening to the Freemuse talk at the Mela festival, the Morrocan rapper Soultana said she was “very much inspired by her two colleagues and hoped that rappers in Morocco could play an important role in Morocco for change.”