As thousands prepare to hit the streets of L.A.’s historic Chinatown on Saturday, June 30, for the largest protest against Walmart ever held in the U.S., several acclaimed musicians, including three Grammy winners, are joining the growing effort to stop the world’s largest retailer from opening in Chinatown and expanding across Los Angeles with poverty-level jobs and practices that hurt local businesses and communities. Musicians are also backing hundreds of Walmart workers who will march on June 30 to demand Walmart treat them with respect and provide wages that can support families.
Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter, actor and author Steve Earle made a video from a recording studio in Nashville to support the march against Walmart in Los Angeles on June 30. After singing a few lines from his new song, Earle says, “If I wasn’t [in Nashville making a record] I would love to be in Chinatown, L.A. on June 30.” He continues, “I’ve never known of Walmart to be a good neighbor in any town it’s ever moved into. Y’all stick together out there.” Watch the video here.
Performing on Saturday, June 30 at the March Against Walmart and Low Wage Jobs are two Grammy Award-winning musicians and singer-songwriters, Tom Morello: The Nightwatchman and Ben Harper. Morello, the guitarist with Rage Against the Machine, will kick off the rally with his anthem for workers’ rights, “Union Song!” Both Morello and Harper will play at the rally in front of a massive banner that reads “Walmart = Poverty,” underneath the iconic Chinese dragons located on Cesar Chavez Ave. and Broadway in L.A.’s Chinatown at noon.
Also performing on June 30 is composer Clifford Tasner of the political satire theater group The Billionaires at the start of the march in Los Angeles State Historic Park, located at 1245 North Spring St., at 11 a.m.
On the eve of the protest, Friday, June 29, Los Angeles-based indie rock band No Age will headline a benefit show for groups fighting to stop Walmart in Chinatown at Human Resources, located at 410 Cottage Home St. in Chinatown, from 7 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $5 and will benefit groups fighting to stop Walmart in Chinatown. The lineup includes several Los Angeles bands and DJs.