By Nicole Brodeur / The Seattle Times
The headliners of Tuesday night’s Kiss the Sky! The Orca Freedom Concert held a press conference Tuesday afternoon at Experience Music Project to talk about their mission, and what moved them to get involved.
Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart, Graham Nash and Country Joe McDonald (of Country Joe and the Fish) appeared with guitar virtuoso Arielle (protégé of Queen lead guitarist Brian May) and the concert’s producer, Michael Harris, a wildlife documentarian and conservationist.
“This Earth is in a very fragile place,” Nash said. “Humankind is in the way.”
All were moved by the 2013 documentary “Blackfish,” directed by Gabriela Cowperthwaite. The film focuses on Tilikum, an orca held by SeaWorld, and the controversy over captive killer whales.
“I’m an entertainer and I can do it by choice,” Ann Wilson told reporters. “An orca, separated from its family, feeling psychotic and really sad, can’t. I saw ‘Blackfish’ and it was like being hit by a truck.”
Nash said he planned to sing “Wind on the Water,” an ode to whale conservation that he recorded with David Crosby back in 1975 – and which still rings true.
The Wilson sisters were planning on singing “Carry On” with Nash.
Said McDonald: “It’s hard to write an entertaining song that isn’t depressing,” when it comes to saving the whales.
“But what the hell,” he said, “maybe we’ll set them all free. You never know.”
Kiss the Sky! The Orca Freedom Concert
7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 22 at Experience Music Project, 325 Fifth Ave. N., Seattle; $100-$500 (206-770-2700 or www.empsfm.org).