With the recent passing of Nelson Mandela, we reflect on a man who stood for freedom, peace, integrity, and change. He rightly was an inspirational figure for everyone, standing up for what he believed in. Mandela used music to empower his political activism, having his influence grow through freedom songs that became a symbol of the movement to end apartheid. Many artists and entertainers have been drawn to and moved by this admirable man. Mandela himself once stated, 'Music is a great blessing. It has the power to elevate and liberate us. It sets people free to dream. It can unite us to sing with one voice. Such is the value of music.'
If you look back at history, music began to have a public impact on his life with the 1988 global movement to free Mandela during an emotional televised concert from London's Wembley Stadium. Also celebrating his 70th birthday, the concert featured superstars such as Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston and Sting. This was a prime representation of the type of power music has on the global consciousness in awareness. It was also just the first of many freedom concerts and celebratory tributes to Mandela.
The award-winning documentary 'Music for Mandela' directed by Jason Bourque reflects on the powerful relationship between his life, the anti-apartheid movement and the music it inspired. It features interviews with musical icons such as Estelle, B.B. King, and Nelson Mandela himself.
The world has lost a truly influential man, but he is survived by the great works of art that were inspired by his works, praise, and life. He taught us that through music, we can find strength, encourage change, and bring people together.
Place your comments below with your favorite music, film, or literatures that have been inspired by the great Nelson Mandela!