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06 avril 2008

Emmanuel Jal Joins MtVu's "Turn It Up" Fight Against Darfur Genocide

"War Child" Feature Documentary Part of Tribeca Film Festival's Line-Up. Jal's "Warchild" Digital Track Now Available on iTunes

Former Sudanese child soldier turned international hip-hop artist EMMANUEL JAL will be part of "Turn It Up," mtvU's month-long "leaks" and music video premieres promotion to fight against the Darfur Genocide. Launched in partnership with STAND, a Student Anti-Genocide Coalition, Jal will join artists including Death Cab for Cutie, Atmosphere, Tapes 'n Tapes, Dizzee Rascal, Tokyo Police Club, The Long Blondes and others, in an effort to help marry the power of great music with college students' activist spirit, to take action on one of the world's most pressing humanitarian crises. Jal's upcoming album, "Warchild," due out May 13, will be part of this promotion. More information on "Turn It Up" can be found here:

"War Child," the feature film documentary that tells the story of Jal's extraordinary life experiences, will screen at this year's Tribeca Film Festival held in New York later this month. A trailer from "War Child" can be viewed here:

The stunning title track from Jal's upcoming CD "Warchild" is now available as a digital single on iTunes beginning. The UK's daily newspaper The Independent called "Warchild" "...a riveting listening pleasure...I strongly recommend this piece of work to anybody who appreciates heartfelt, introspective and literate music." Jal has also just finished filming the video for the "Warchild" track; the video and exclusive behind-the-scenes footage will be available shortly.

Emmanuel Jal knows of the horrific Darfur situation better than most. For a seven-year period beginning when he was about six or seven years old, he was taken from his home and taught the skills to be a child soldier, fighting for the Sudan People's Liberation Army in Sudan's civil war. He learned how to fire a machine gun before he could ride a bike, and lives with the nightmares of the unspeakable things he had to do to survive. When he was about 13, he, along with some 400 other "child soldiers," courageously deserted the rebel lines, trekking through empty deserts in search of food and shelter. Only sixteen made it to the relative freedom of a refugee camp. Jal was one of them.

Music is what kept him going after returning to "the real world." On "Warchild," Jal mixes African with hip hop with world music rhythms, and tells his incredible story in songs like "Forced to Sin," "Many Rivers to Cross," "Baaki Wara," and the title track. Over the past several years, he has befriended artists like Peter Gabriel, Bono, Moby and Sir Bob Geldof who have helped Emmanuel in countless ways, whether with his music or his Gua Africa foundation that helps educate former child soldiers.

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