Some top V.I. musicians sent a musical message of love and hope this week, visiting schools, speaking with students and preparing to record an original anti-violence song for the new LIATI, or Love Is All There Is project of the Stop the Bleeding Foundation.
Well-known Virgin Islands-bred artists including Pressure Buss Pipe, Verse Simmonds, Elijah Vegas, Rena Faith, Mada Nile, and Junior P joined up to help out, Stop the Bleeding President Cheryl Francis said at a meet-and-greet with the artists Friday evening at Villa Morales Restaurant.
Thursday, the musician visited St. Thomas’ Bertha Boschulte Junior High School and Charlotte Amalie High School Thursday, then came to St. Croix Friday to speak at John H. Woodson and Arthur Richards Junior High Schools, Francis said.
"They not only performed, but first they sat down and talked with the students about their own lives, what they have done, who they are, so the students can understand the even if they have trouble in their lives, they can still succeed," Francis said. "The kids were so excited, and now they are telling me which musicians we should bring next."
Collis "DJ Crunkmaster" Mitchell of Isle 95 WJKC radio station brought the concept to Stop the Bleeding.
"A lot of people try to do outreach to stop the violence," Mitchell said. "But I now people zone into their music. Kids; pop culture and music influences them the most."
Part of the concept is to bring a lot of musicians together to work together on a song, "like "We Are the World," said Mitchell. "If it budges even one two or three people, then we’ve accomplished something."
When he called around asking musicians, they all were eager to jump aboard, he said.
"I was planning to do the same sort of thing myself," agreed reggae artist Pressure.
"As someone from the projects myself, I think it’s important. When they called, I said, yes, let’s do it together. If we can all join hands and make the Virgin Islands a better place, I see no fault in it," he said.
Saturday morning, all the musicians will be heading to Laurent "Tippy" Alfred’s Aqua Sounds Studio for an all-day composing and recording session. Once complete, the song will go on local radio and television stations.