A New Brick In The Wall
Toronto-based band Blurred Vision features two Iranian brothers who go by the names Sepp (vox, guitars) and Sohl (bass). The musicians don’t use their surnames to protect family members still living in Iran. According to aolnews.com, the brothers’ parents immigrated to Canada from Iran in the mid-‘80s. Their father was a former general in Iran’s military.
Blurred Vision’s take on the 1979 Pink Floyd tune switches up the chorus to “Hey, Ayatollah, leave those kids alone!”
The cover song’s music video, which features footage of protests from the 2009 Iranian presidential election, has racked up nearly 160,000 views on YouTube. Last month it was nominated in the music video category at London’s Ruses Soho Shorts film festival.
In an interview with the BBC News, 35-year-old Sohl explained how the band got permission to cover the song from Pink Floyd founder Roger Waters.
“All we had to do was ask basically. That’s what it came down to. And Roger Waters just gave us his blessing, very quickly actually. He said ‘Go ahead and use it’ and in fact, he said that anybody who wants to now use the song the way that we’ve done it, with the lyrics changed and everything, they have to come to us now to get permission to use it.
“It was very gracious of him. It was no surprise to us when he did that because he’s always been a great humanitarian with the stuff he’s done around the world.”
The band said it has received support from fans all around the world.
“We’ve been getting messages from so many Iranians saying they are using the song as a way to voice their protests,” Sohl told the U.K.’s The Independent.
“A message came through to us last week and when Sohl translated it he had tears running down his cheeks,” 28-year-old Sepp said. “It was from a fan in Iran and he just kept saying over and over again: ‘Keep our voice alive. If you don’t then no one will hear us.’”
Last week Sepp told BBC News that the duo is in the studio preparing for its next single.
“There will be a lot of music, in the future that we’re going to release,” Sepp said. “Some might be about love, some might be about personal experiences. But right now what we are trying to do is make music to raise awareness about the plights of people around the world. …The music will carry on and will always have a reflection of what’s going on in the world.”
“Another Brick In The Wall (Hey Ayatollah, Leave Those Kids Alone!” is available for purchase through iTunes. Half of the proceeds will be donated to Amnesty International. According to its site, Amnesty’s mission “is to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated.”
Click here for Blurred Vision’s website.
Click here for the duo’s interview with BBC News.
Click here for the The Independent story.