Hundreds Of Musicians Pledge To Cut Ties With Amazon In ‘No Music For ICE’ Letter

Amazon, through its subsidiary Amazon Web Services (AWS), provides server space and infrastructure to thousands upon thousands of organizations and corporations across the world. It’s an open platform, meaning anyone can use it, and Amazon can’t necessarily dictate who can and who can’t. One of its users is Palantir, a data analytics company which has contracts with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, more commonly known as ICE.

Hundreds of artists have now pledged to cut ties with Amazon in an open letter entitled ‘No Music For ICE.’ The letter makes four demands of Amazon:

* Terminate existing contracts with military, law enforcement, and government agencies (ICE, CBP, ORR) that commit human rights abuses

* Stop providing Cloud services & tools to organizations (such as Palantir) that power the US government’s deportation machine

* End projects that encourage racial profiling and discrimination, such as Amazon’s facial recognition product

* Reject future engagements w/ aforementioned bad actors.

The likelihood that any or all of these demands will be met is up for debate; however, government contracts are likely to provide a large portion of the service’s revenue throughout the year.

We will not allow Amazon to exploit our creativity to promote its brand while it enables attacks on immigrants, communities of color, workers, and local economies,” the letter concludes. “We call on all artists who believe in basic rights and human dignity to join us.”

To add your name to the letter, fill out this form. At time of publishing, the

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The Black Madonna Outraged Over Amazon Festival Booking & Demanded To Be Removed from Lineup

The Black Madonna Outraged Over Amazon Festival Booking & Demanded To Be Removed from Lineup

The Black Madonna has been removed from Amazon’s newly announced Intersect Music Festival after expressing extreme outrage over the booking.

The event sponsored by Amazon Web Services aka AWS has a strong lineup, featuring Foo Fighters, Kacey Musgraves, Beck, Anderson.Paak and more — but The Black Madonna wants absolutely no part of it. According to the superstar DJ, Amazon was never mentioned in any of the paperwork or offers put forth by the third party dealing with the booking.

She claims this festival is not what she — or potentially any of the other artists — signed up for. It’s unclear whether other acts including Gesaffelstein, Flying Lotus, Sophie and Jamie XX were left in the dark about festival affiliations as well.

Amazon, however, tells a much different story in its statement to Pitchfork:

Our affiliation of the Intersect Festival is clear in the contract that was signed by Black Madonna’s management team. “Amazon Web Services” was named in the contract five separate times, and throughout creative materials that were reviewed and approved. Regardless, we’ve decided to release her from her contractual obligation.

It’s obvious The Black Madonna does not wish to be affiliated with Amazon or the company’s forthcoming event, set to take place in Las Vegas this December.

Read her tweets below to get a better scope of her argument and the rest of the matter.

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Amazon Launching Its Own Music Festival In Las Vegas With Foo Fighters, Gesaffelstein, & More

Amazon Launching Its Own Music Festival In Las Vegas With Foo Fighters, Gesaffelstein, & More

While Amazon’s corporate events usually include a big star or two, they’re hardly considered “music events.” Now, the online retailer is getting into the music festival world as it launches Intersect in Las Vegas this December.

It’s quite the abrupt announcement for a full, 2-day festival, but the lineup is no joke. Headlining will be Kacey Musgraves and Beck on day 1, with Foo Fighters and Anderson. Paak & The Free Nationals on day 2. They will be supported by the likes of Gesaffelstein, Jamie xx, JPEGMAFIA, Flying Lotus (3D), Kaytranada, Leon Bridges, and more.

In addition to the music acts, Amazon promises fun and games including a massive ball pit, a video arcade and a “post-apocalyptic dodgeball stadium.” There will also be food and cocktails, plus art installations like a six-story high tower of video art called the “Monolith.” To round out the technology theme, a light show consisting of 500 drones programmed and flown by a female-lead team will celebrate women in tech.

The festival powered by Amazon will take place on December 6th and 7th in Vegas, at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds. Tickets start at $169 and are on sale now.


Photo courtesy of Coachella

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