Tom Morello Tells Fans the ‘World Isn’t Going to Change Itself’


Tom Morello at Louder than Life. Tom Morello isn't just known for being a fantastic guitarist in Rage Against the Machine and beyond. He's also a longtime activist.

Tom Morello – Author Cat Badra, Photo via Anne Erickson

Tom Morello isn’t just known for being a fantastic guitarist in Rage Against the Machine and beyond. He’s also a longtime activist and never takes a back seat to hot issues. Now, Morello is once against speaking out about his beliefs and telling fans that the “world isn’t going to change itself,” so it’s up to them to make changes happen.

Tom Morello Talks Change

Tom Morello appeared at a press conference this weekend for Hellfest in Clisson, France, and there, he discussed why he’s spent so much of his time being an activist, not just making music. He says he wants to make a difference in people’s lives.

Speaking at the press conference, Morell said (via, “Across 21 records, there’s really one message that is a thread through all of my music, and that is that the world is not going to change itself. That is up to you. And by you, I literally mean you — the people watching on your thing and your thing; that’s how the world changes. And sometimes it seems like this sort of monolithic problem that we’ll never be able to get past and the world cannot be changed or the worst people are the ones in charge, and they often are. But you are not witnesses to history; you are agents of history.”

He added, “History is not something that happened; it’s something you make. Whenever there has been a progressive radical, even revolutionary positive change for the better, it’s come from people who are no different than anyone in this room or any of the audiences that you’re writing for or that your videos are for. Once you have that realization that you do have your hands on the wheel of history and of this planet, and if you wanna make it a more peaceful, a more just, a more equitable, a more anti-racist, a more environmentally sound place, there’s no one to blame if it doesn’t happen but you for not standing up.”

Later in the interview, he was asked if everything that’s going on in the world is overwhelming to Morello.

“It is overwhelming,” he replied. “And from the climate stuff to Gaza, there’s a lot. But what I look at is, like, today I’m gonna do everything I can to do several things. One is to be to play the best guitar I can, to sing the best I can, to have my band, the Freedom Fighter Orchestra, deliver the goods in a way that is gonna be a compelling and artistically meaningful moment. And if I do that right, the message that rides on that is gonna touch somebody. Now there’s 70,000 people out there (at this year’s Hellfest). I don’t know if it touches seven of them, or 7,000 of them, or whatever, but I know that over the course of 30 years, doing that, the thing I just described to you, has had repercussions far beyond what I ever imagined it could.”

Hellfest is set to take place from June 27 through 30. This year marks its 16th event.

Cat Badra
Posted by Cat Badra | Metal, Music, Rock News

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