We just documented his seventh album, You Will Know When It’s Right and his travels in Reykjavik with Nydonsk but Lindy was also making Hamilton his new home base. And even more interesting, he’s already become instrumental in bringing even more people into the Hamilton area.
From his previous album, Frozen in Time, Lindy had taken great interest in activism and decided to write songs inspired by the plights and projects of great activists from around the world. One such activist became a special friend for Lindy and when Human Rights Activist Kidus Mehalu became targeted in his home country, Lindy was part of the team that helped set him and later his family in Hamilton. This weekend, Lindy leads a troupe of musicians to help out some of the newest additions to the city.
“I wanted to do whatever I could to support people that were doing far more important things than I was doing as a songwriter,” says Lindy. “I wrote this song for Kidus and sent it to him but I didn’t hear back form him for months because Ethiopia had shut down the internet in that country. I finally heard back and he sent me a video of him holding a reading group with his students — they’ve had to surround him in a circle to protect him from the people that wanted to hurt him in the past — and my song that I wrote for him was playing in the background and I could see a little skip in his step. It made me feel so great.
“It’s been a long story that I could write a book about but Kidus came to Canada last June to speak as part of a conference on LGBTQ and women’s and children's rights and it was on Canada Day when he was in Hamilton when he found out from his wife that he couldn’t go home because the police had come to arrest him for his Facebook activism,” adds Lindy. “He’s a real Desmond Tutu type character back in Ethiopia so that’s why they wanted him arrested or dead. Kidus, his wife, and their two small girls have escaped, but they had to leave almost everything behind. They need money to be somewhere safe and start a new life. They have arrived in Hamilton and are trying to make their way. They even welcomed a baby boy February 2 and need help getting on their feet.”
Lindy has organized a fundraiser to help out his friend and international figure and he couldn’t be more proud of the city he’s recently decided to make his home.
“Hamilton is the best,” beams Lindy. “This situation shows how great Canada is and supporting people like these refugees fleeing for their lives. We’re hoping Canada does the right thing and Hamilton does the right thing as we work on his situation. In the meantime, we’re raising awareness and some funds for this beautiful family that will really give back to our community. We’ve got some fantastic musical friends playing with us and I hope fans of the bands come out and people who want to support human activists come out. But really Hamiltonians, I’ve quickly found out are a welcoming community that supports the people in need. I’m really looking forward this event and I hope everyone comes out.”
Lindy Vopnfjörd Hosts Hamilton Loves You for Human Rights Activist Kidus Mehalu this Saturday February 29 Doors open at 5pm with children's performer Andy Griffiths Lindy Vopnfjörd and family and then after 7pm with Corin Raymond, Lisa Winn and Andrew Aldridge, Deeps, Shari and Jonny, Alfie Smith, Blind Mule and Lindy Vopnfjord. Tickets are available at lindmusic.com in advance for $15 or at the door for $20.