We Will Not Be Silenced
Perhaps it would be ok to share a fascinating and inspiring story….
In 2004 when TOL23 released We Will Not Be Silenced on a limited release, little did they know what was about to happen.
For Paul and Mike it was simply an expression of their sadness at the loss of more young lives in another meaningless war by a heartless government. Based in East Mesa, Arizona, Paul expressed this frustration through music by using specific frequencies and a theory he had developed called “Frequency Differentials” that he had been creating for a while at that point. The vocal, from DC peace activist Graylan Hagler, said everything that both of the guys were feeling.
Walking into the small design studio the boutique agency occupied, Paul handed the finished piece to Mike and asked what could be done. By the way, Paul and Mike had shared the experience of building a global movement through music in the 90s, it was logical at this time of great concern he would turn to one of his most trusted friends to express visually what he was feeling.
Over the next 8 weeks they worked tirelessly, sometimes 24 hours a day, as the two coalesced their respective skill sets and eventually, on a cold Arizona winter morning, they put the final pieces together to complete We Will Not Be Silenced.
The purpose of the video was simple, to challenge the mainstream propaganda, to unite the Gold Star families with the peace movement by using a uniting narrative and to make people appreciate the true cost of war.
We Will Not Be Silenced pushed the envelope and implemented a disruptive strategy. Based on the core fundamentals of Frequency Differential and fusing profound frequencies, a powerful vocal, by sequencing inspirational visual elements and what Paul was terming in 2004 “frequential imagery”, the video was released on Paul`s website in an almost understated manner. To quote Paul in an interview from 2008, “we hoped maybe a few hundred people would sit up and take note, none of us were prepared by what happened next”.
The first indication was a $15000.00 bandwidth bill. In those pre-You Tube days, websites used to host their own videos. We Will Not Be Silenced was going viral, ultimately being shared across over 192 countries and by the end exceeding 25 million views. Praise from the world of politics, the highest levels of the Music and TV industry and from progressive activist groups poured in.
Described as one of the finest agit-prop movies of all time, We Will Not Be Silenced introduced a new messaging medium, one that has been copied by virtually every network and advertising agency in the world, albeit at an inferior level due to the lack of understanding of the core principles that drove the piece.
Today, 15 years later, the message rings as true as it did in 2004. The music and visuals still feel, sound and look as groundbreaking as they were, in that moment in time, when two friends decided to take a stand for what they felt was moral, right and their duty to their fellow human beings, with no expectation whatsoever, other than to inspire.
An expression of raw emotion, integrity, authenticity and passion perfectly captured in, and by, a timeless medium.
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