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EFE News Service
Lourdes Perez Takes Her Peace And Justice Songs To Palestinians
By Francisca Oiz
MAY 23, 2002
Copyright © 2002 EFE News Service. All Rights Reserved.
(c) 2002 Distributed via COMTEX News
Austin, Texas -. Known as the "new Mercedes Sosa," a reference to the Grammy-winning Argentine singer of protest songs, Puerto Rican singer Lourdes Perez, has launched her new recording shortly before leaving the United States to perform in Palestinian refugee camps.
Perez, who lives in Austin, will leave this week on a tour to several countries around the world to "lend a voice to those who have none," she said.
"This year has been very difficult, but we have to be thankful we are alive in this world filled with so many conflicts, and we must continue to fight," the singer said.
In an interview with EFE, the singer-songwriter said that the best way to survive difficult times "is not to distance ourselves from the people we love ... these people keep us grounded."
Lourdes Perez's new work, "Recuerdame por Mi" (Remember me for who I am) and her previous recording, "Vestigios" (Vestiges), are songs of justice, peace and love.
With her compositions, Perez sings to immigrants who undertake dangerous jobs in U.S. fields.
She also dedicates her song "Aguas Benditas" (Holy Waters) to those immigrants who cross the Rio Grande in search of a better life in the United States.
According to the singer, her mission is to be a witness to history, events and "and to be the spokeswoman for what one sees."
After singing in Chiapas, after the Mexican army massacred Indians and in Vieques , Puerto Rico , where the U.S. Navy is carrying out live-fire training maneuvers, Perez is now preparing to sing at Palestinian refugee camps.
"We are going to try to learn how these people live in one of the refugee camps," she said.
Perez and her producer Annette D'Armata are also going to try and establish contracts with Palestinian musicians to exchange voices and music.
For now, Perez is learning to sing in Arabic with songs from composer Ahmed Kapoor, who translates parts into Spanish, the language in which he generally sings.
"At this point in history, when there is such tight control on the media, there are still areas, such as in poetry, where there is no censure. If I can speak for others, I do it," the artist said.
For her work, the young Puerto Rican singer has been included in the Music Hound World Essential Album Guide, which lists the 1,000 best female singers in the world.
In the United States, Perez has accompanied Argentine singer Mercedes Sosa, who gave her a good luck charm, a brooch, which she always wears while performing.