The Art of Peace: Songs for Tibet II, has contributions from a host of artists including Bob Kate Bush, Bob Geldof, Sting, Elbow, Tina Turner, Howard Jones and Peter Gabriel.
But the big-name artists, with a mixture of new, remixed and previously released songs, are joined by newer artists in the hope of reaching out to a younger generation. Singer-songwriter Lorde, 18, and Icelandic folk-pop band Of Monsters and Men, are two acts aimed to appeal to younger listeners; as is Californian singer/songwriter Ed Prosek, another rising talent who said: “We are so incredibly humbled and honored to be a part of this beautiful collection of songs”.
The release date is scheduled for His Holiness’ actual birthday on 6th July. However, the album is currently available to pre-order in digital and physical forms*, as well as part of bundles with 2008's Songs for Tibet. Fans who contribute* can have their name placed in a special "Thank You" section of the Songs for Tibet II's liner notes.
All the tracks will be a combination of unreleased versions of previously released songs or new recordings. Proceeds from the album will benefit initiatives designed to spread the teachings of the Dalai Lama, and promote and preserve the culture of Tibet.
The original Songs for Tibet, a double album, featured big names, such as Sting, John Mayer, Dave Matthews, Alanis Morissette, Garbage, Rush, Jackson Brown, Ben Harper, Moby and Regina Spektor. Both that and the new release are produced and musical selection coordinated by Rupert, who has also contributed tracks.
He said that the Dalai Lama "is used to the people who are already sympathetic to his ideas. He felt that he needed to be more focused on younger people who are perhaps not as familiar with his message."
Other contributors include Beyond, a spiritual singing quartet that stars Tina Turner, and singer/songwriter Eleanor McEvoy, composer of the best-selling Irish album in Irish history, who said: "I'm very proud to be included on "Songs for Tibet II". I've chosen to include my song "Deliver Me (From What You Do)" which concerns itself with hierarchical oppression of any sort".
The complete list of artists and tracks is:
Sting - The Book of My Life * Of Monsters & Men - King & Lionheart * Elbow - Lippy Kids * The Family Crest - Sparks * Kate Bush - Wild Man * Lorde - A World Alone * Beyond (Regula Curti, Dechen Shak-Dagsay, Sawani Shende-Sathaye & Tina Turner) - Mother Within * Duncan Sheik - Sometimes * Howard Jones - Things Can Only Get Better * Bob Geldof - Baby’s Going Down * Rival Sons - Sacred Tongue * The Crystal Method (feat. Meiko) - Falling Hard * Ed Prosek - Home * Rupert Hine - You Can’t Be Chased * Eleanor McEvoy - Deliver Me (from What You Do) * Peter Gabriel - Signal To Noise
Proceeds will go to the Art of Peace Foundation, which works to preserve Tibetan cultural heritage. The album follows the first "Songs for Tibet" album, which was released in 2008. Contributors included Alanis Morissette, Garbage, Dave Matthews and Rush. The record was released amid high tensions in Tibet and "was inherently political, given that it was tied in with the Beijing Olympics”.
The latest album aims to focus on the Dalai Lama's lifelong commitment to non-violence and compassion. Rupert described the record as "a celebration of his 80 years on the planet."
The Dalai Lama has gained a wide following in Western countries, with celebrities such as actor Richard Gere publicly declaring support for the spiritual leader. On Sunday, 29th June 2015, the Dalai Lama appeared at Glastonbury to encourage fans at the festival to seek inner happiness. Beijing has increasingly tried to isolate the Buddhist leader, who fled into exile in India in 1959; China banned the last "Songs for Tibet" album.
Duncan Sheik, who is best known for his 1996 hit "Barely Breathing" said that support for the Dalai Lama carried risks for artists looking to break into China's fast-growing entertainment market.
"You don't want to get yourself in a situation where you become persona non grata for a whole billion people, but I can't really control that, and I think what will be, will be."
A practicing Buddhist, Sheik contributed "Sometimes", a song from his upcoming album that explores spiritual dimensions in everyday life. "I do hope that the record is heard by as many people who might enjoy it as possible, and that it does filter in through the noise of the rest of the world and that they hear something that maybe moves them in a deeper way," he said.
Pledge Music Info - http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/songsfortibet/updates/54359
Art of Peace Foundation - http://www.artofpeacefoundation.org