Eduardo Del Signore: Grammy-Nominated Musician Using Music to Visualize Climate Change – Ep. 122

Eduardo Del Signore: Creator of A Call 2Peace Foundation

Eduardo Del Signore is a 2020 Grammy-nominated and Award-winning Musician and the founder of the A Call 2Peace Foundation.

He leverages technology, science, and music to spur climate action. Through The ClimateMusic Project, Eduardo uses data visuals from climate scientists for his musical interpretation of the fight against climate change. 

He just got back from a performance at the World Economic Forum, and we discuss the clarity of vision he had that brought him to this highly unusual and rewarding path. 

Connecting the dots between seemingly unrelated things is my favorite part of this show, and I know you are going to be deeply inspired by Eduardo Del Signore. 

Full Unedited Audio Conversation:

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5:49 – “We’re born with everything we need. And in the moment between we take the first breath and a few days or months after we get a name, that we start to react to that particular sound. We have an identity already. And in that brief period of time, everything is there – peace, joy, all the qualities. We don’t have fears. We don’t, at that particular moment. We learn a lot of fears along the way that are passed along from generation to generations in what we call tradition. So that’s why I think it’s so important to beat that often path because it’s like if you don’t do, you will never really – I mean, I cannot say never – but it will be hard to really find out who you are, who you really are, which is not your name or what you do, it’s more than that and it’s more beautiful than that.”

Are You Really Connected To This Planet?

*13:21 – “It is essential that we find that peace as individuals and then as a society that we can understand that we need kindness. That we need common sense. That we need empathy. It’s very important. I call those things endangered species in these days. If you read what’s being written or talked on the news or on the social media, it’s like ‘What?’ Do you have any roots? Are you really connected to this planet? I mean, what’s going on? You know, and there is the other factor that we have disregarded as societies – the connection between indigenous cultures and the planet. We have disregarded and pushed aside and killed it.”

What Do You Value?

*18:17 – (Ross) “One of the things that social media and the Internet has done for us, the tribalism and the getting stupider, because I completely agree and you’re not the only one who thinks that. I think many, many intelligent people think that. But one of the things it has done is that it has made a lot of people feel less comfortable embracing who they are. Because take me, for example, I’m a millennial, I’m a 30-something. I’m a white, Caucasian, American male. And there are certain opinions that I’m supposed to have. There are certain things that I’m supposed to feel and values that I’m supposed to have. And the Internet really reinforces the idea that you must be a certain way, you must value a certain thing, you must think a certain way. And I think if people don’t know who they are very strongly, those voices kind of take over their life and they start living for somebody else’s platform rather than saying, ‘This is what I value, even if the world doesn’t agree with me.’” 

19:22 – (Ross) “Like you said about history, all the violent cultures of the past, they completely wiped out all of the peaceful cultures because the peaceful people, they didn’t want war. They didn’t want to fight. They just wanted to be left alone. But that’s one of the great tragedies of the human experience, I think, is that so many peaceful people have been wiped out on every continent in favor of much more vicious people.” 


Expressing Climate Change Through Music

*22:17 – “I was approached by an organization from San Francisco called the Climate Music Project. And what they do is they link together scientists that study the causes and effects of climate change with composers. So they gave the composers, they contacted me and they say, ‘well, we have three ways of working.’ You either, I had to back off a little bit, is like they do their studies, you choose the areas that you want to work with. And I chose the change of the temperature, the reabsorption of carbon dioxide and the investment in renewable energies in contrast with business as usual. So they create graphics for a span of 100–150 years, sometimes up to 200, with a projection all the way to 2050, in which you have two outcomes. If we don’t do anything, is business as usual, how things have been regressing in a way because it’s going in the wrong direction or if we become active about it and we start investing more in renewable energy and creating ways of capturing the carbon dioxide back.”

23:38 – “The earth resources are not infinite, it’s big but it’s like I’ve been comparing the situation of the world right now to, let’s say you have a nice house and you bring your car into the living room, you turn the engine on and close all the windows and leave it running 24 hours a day. It’s limited, isn’t it? So we have been doing that with Earth for over 100 years, since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.” 

24:33 – “They created these graphics with the studies of all the topics and everything that has been going on and what could happen if we start acting. The graphics are transformed into numbers, mathematical progressions, because the graphics go up or down depending and those mathematical progressions, with a program they have, they are transformed into musical notes.” 

27:39 – “I had the idea of improvising with my bass on top of what I had already recorded and the video. And there was a particular moment – that made it more dimensional, more three-dimensional because it was being improvised but at the same time it was live and it was filmed and recorded. So it created a different thing that they could really grasp. And they got into it so much that it was halfway through a song that I pick up my bow – I have a bass bow – and I started blowing my 16 bass, the electric, with my pedals and then all of a sudden, the environment completely changed as the music was playing on the video. And the room went completely silent. Silent, silent, silent. And the whole thing was in a ballroom that you could hear waiters with the plates and this and that. And then people in the next room like ‘rah, rah, rah, rah.’ It’s like all of a sudden we were in a bubble of silence. And it’s just those things that happen, you know? I mean, I wasn’t planning on it, but it happened and it was not just from me, but from everybody. So everybody felt a part of something. And they were touched. So when I finished, it was a beautiful standing ovation.” 

33:04 – “What is the root of all these things? You know, in the financial world, in the New World order, the whole thing is greed. Greed is what? It’s fear. It’s just fear based. I mean, how much is enough? I mean, do you think Elon Musk has enough time in his life to count his bills? There is no way he can even – start counting now and maybe his grandkids or great grandkids can finish counting the money. The same with all these super ultra-rich people and companies. It’s like, ‘What are you trying to do? What is your purpose?’” 

36:17 – “From all the species of plants and animals in the whole planet, the only species that doesn’t know its own purpose is the human race. You know an ant knows exactly what it needs to do. A whale knows exactly what it needs to do. A plant knows exactly how it has to grow in order for all the leaves to face the sun.” 

39:14 – “There is a great deal of ignorance of the self and of nature and that needs to be addressed, you know? But the society doesn’t teach that. The systems we live at, particularly starting with this country and how this philosophy and let’s – I don’t want to talk about capitalism or socialism or anything like that because I don’t believe in politics or religion – but it is not focused on really giving you a direct relationship with nature, with the universe, with yourself. There is not that connection. That’s why people are completely Oingo Bongo.” 

41:57 – (Ross) “I think it’s like two people on a spaceship that’s crashing into the sun and they’re arguing about which color shirt they should be wearing. And one of them is wearing a red shirt, one of them is wearing blue, and they’re just fighting to the death over what shirt? And it’s like, guys, you’re both going to crash into the sun, whichever shirt you’re wearing. So stop it. Who cares what other people are doing? Why do you need to go out of your way to bully somebody who is trans or who is from a different ethnicity? Why do you focus on that when there are problems that affect all of us? No matter what color your skin is, no matter what your background is, why don’t we focus on that? And it takes determination for people like you and me to keep reminding ourselves and to recenter ourselves and to say: ‘This is what matters. This is what matters. This is what matters.’ Because it’s so easy to get distracted by all these blinking lights and things that don’t matter.” 

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