Call for Original Songs: Songs for Sacred Lands

The Coalition to Dismantle the Doctrine of Discovery and Music that Makes Community are collaborating together on a community singing playlist project!

The Coalition is a faith-based movement that seeks to respond to the call of Indigenous communities to the Christian Church to address the extraction, extinction and enslavement done in the name of Christ on Indigenous lands. MMC is a non-profit organization working with ecumenical communities and leaders to empower and liberate communities’ spiritual life through singing.

We welcome original* song submissions around the theme of “Sacred Lands.” Understanding the land as sacred, not as property or commodity, is an Indigenous worldview — one which the dominant culture desperately needs, if we are going to actually address the root causes of today’s climate crisis.

Goal: We aim to compile a list of songs that inspire and compel communities of faith (broadly defined) to organize in solidarity with Indigenous communities, defending sacred lands from extractive industries. Indigenous Peoples make up 5% of the world’s population and yet protect 80% of the world’s biodiversity. The project will also increase awareness of efforts for Indigenous land rematriation and cultural and ecological revitalization.

Songs for grief support our communal grieving in response to ongoing colonization and climate crisis, and songs for hope can engage us in action towards decolonization, reorienting us to purpose, community, and our shared commitments to repair.

Long-term Vision: We hope that our playlist of songs will support personal, cultural, and structural change organizing, to move away from the pervasive, extractive logic and the deep roots of injustice that stem from the Doctrine of Discovery and instead “sing a new world into being.”

More Details: This playlist will be a free, educational resource hosted on the Coalition website. The final product will be a downloadable PDF booklet of educational information, song lyrics, stories, and links to recordings. These songs on the playlist are intended for use in contexts such as congregational worship, community song circles, and movement demonstrations (such as prayer vigils or protests).

Due to the cultural change design of this project, we anticipate that these songs are likely to be sung in contexts with predominantly white audiences.

No revenue will be generated from this project; however, artists may choose to have their website or social media linked.

To ensure the playlist includes artists from a wide range of socioeconomic, racial and cultural backgrounds, honorariums are available for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) artists who submit original* songs. Special thanks to Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) for their help in providing honorariums.

There are no restrictions on composers’ age, nationality, or the length of songs. At the same time, we are especially seeking shorter songs (with or without layers/harmonies) that could be easily taught and sung together in groups – whether in worship, in decolonizing/anti-racist education spaces, in the streets, etc. See Music that Makes Community and their song library for examples of songs in this format.

*Original = artists who submit were a part of creating the song and have the authorization to share for inclusion in this playlist.

Playlist submission extended deadline: July 1st

Playlist selections confirmed: August 15th

Playlist release: September 15th

Have questions or a desire to volunteer with this project? Email Doe Hoyer, Coalition Repair Network Organizer: doe@dismantlediscovery.org

More information:

WATCH: Conie and Doe share about the call for songs

JOIN US for office hours to talk about your songs!
April 23 (11:30am-1pm CST) OR May 23 (4-5:30pm CST)
REGISTER: https://bit.ly/PlaylistOfficeHours