Watch a concert, be the generation to take action: A preview of the 2018 Global Citizen Festival

Since its first North American iteration in 2012, the Global Citizen Festival has been building a movement of engaging action-takers through live music to end extreme poverty by 2030. This year the project is counting on the likes of Janet Jackson, The Weeknd, Shawn Mendes, Cardi B and Janelle Monáe to get their message across, assisted by power couple Deborra-lee Furness and Hugh Jackman.

Even if the event is held in New York City’s Central Park Great Lawn space, Canadians are more than welcome to be among the 60,000+ attendees on September 29th. I’d hope so, with two of our own so prominently featured! Start with downloading or updating the Global Citizen app, and then get activizing – sharing articles and tweeting will earn you points that can be redeemed for a chance to win tickets to this year’s festival (there’ll be a new challenge two weeks from now).

Prospective Global Citizens should be putting their minds towards how to act positively regarding women and girls, education, global health, preserving foreign aid, the environment…y’know, everything the current sitting president couldn’t care less about. All noble causes to be sure, but my biggest concern is where are the rock bands?

The Global Citizen Festival has had a few memorable moments, like Stevie Wonder taking a knee for America and Eddie Vedder duetting with Beyoncé on “Redemption Song“. I just hope we haven’t seen the last of a half dozen odd guitarists jamming away on “Rockin’ in the Free World” for 10+ minutes, like Uncle Neil did with Dave Grohl and The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach seven years ago.

Gilles LeBlanc

Gilles LeBlanc literally fell into “alternative rock” wayyy back at Lollapalooza 1992, where he got caught in his first mosh pit watching some band named Pearl Jam. Since then, he’s spent the better part of his life looking for music to match the liberating rush he felt that day, with a particular chest-beating emphasis on stuff coming out of his native Canada. It took him awhile, but Gilles now writes feverishly about all things that rock (and or roll) through his ROCKthusiast alter ego.

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