Category Archives: Songs and Stories

Joshua Vana Sings “To the River” at Yellow Finch Blockade

Message from Joshua Vana:

Y’all, there’s this thing I do sometimes where I go sing and play to folks who are living in trees and meanwhile directly preventing the advance of billion dollar corporations plundering Appalachia.

Yesterday I was at the Yellow Finch Blockade on day 331 of uninterrupted tree sits, saying ‘thank you’ and enjoying the company of the good folks there. I found some time in between the roar of backhoes, all perfectly perched to flip over at any moment on the side of the ridge directly across the road, to play this song I wrote this past spring called “To The River”.

It’s difficult for me to explain witnessing the song play out in real life as it’s sung – but I can say that I rarely feel more grounded and alive than when I’m with so many others who are risking something – anything – time, energy, money, safety, hope, to maintain a future we can thrive in (or simply survive in).

One of the things I can offer to the world, to a decent society, in times of struggle (though there seem to be quite a few these days, and multiplying) is music. It’s important for communities to tell their own story of resistance and I think this tune is in that greater songbook somewhere.

There are some fires burning in Appalachia that we’d like to keep lit. Some of ’em are being cared for by Appalachians Against Pipelines. I’d like to encourage you to look into this little corner of a greater movement for water protection and community defense and maybe consider supporting them at bit.ly/supportmvpresistance. They’d appreciate any help you might be able to offer, and so would the folks who’ve been fighting the Mountain Valley Pipeline for five long years.

Thanks for reading, listening – and for those ‘in between’, you know who you are.

End of the Line: Episode 28 – Finale

End of the Line: a “finale” to the excellent podcast series that, as it has over the past two years, presents a concise, well produced summary of the Virginia fight to stop the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast Pipelines. Thank you, End of the Line folks!

Although Episode 28 wraps up their regular installments, they plan to return for quarterly, longer-format episodes in the future. In this “Finale,” End of the Line speaks to some familiar voices about where the pipeline struggles stand right now, and what lies ahead. Original air date: 07/05/19

This Fight Is Now

New video from ARTivism Virginia. Follow one Mountain Valley Pipeline resister from Southwest Virginia as she journeys to stand with the Union Hill Community in their resistance against the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and its proposed compressor station. Bernadette “BJ” Brown speaks a simple and profound truth to those resisting new fossil fuel infrastructure anywhere: “We will win. Because if we lose – there won’t be anyone here to win. “This Fight is Now” is a collaboration of ARTivism Virginia and Lights and Years.

New Broken Ground Podcast


Broken Ground is a podcast by the Southern Environmental Law Center “digging up environmental stories in the south that don’t always get the attention they deserve, and giving voice to the people bringing those stories to light.”

Demand for Power, episode 3 of Broken Ground, is now live, and tells John and Ruby Laurys’ story of stepping up in Buckingham County to defend their farm and neighbors when pipeline developers won’t back down from pursuing a risky, polluting project that’s become obsolete.

Listen here.

Radio Feature: Court Challenges to ACP


In a 5-minute feature story airing on April 30, 2019, WMRA’s Andrew Jenner brings us up to speed on the complicated landscape of environmental challenges to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. The story includes interviews with Patrick Hunter (Southern Environmental Law Center), Lewis Freeman (Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance) and Karl Neddenien (Dominion spokesperson).

SUN SiNG Review


“To the River”, a new no pipeline anthem written by Joshua Vana and arranged, performed and filmed by the SUN SiNG collective, premiered at the SUN SiNG Concert: April 26, 2019.

There was no studio time in the creation of this video. “To the River” was recorded and filmed along the MVP & ACP fracked gas pipeline routes in areas of devastation using the Sun Bus. The Sun Bus is a cargo van with a concert level sound and recording system within it that is powered by the solar panels mounted to its roof. The Sun Bus was designed and custom built by SUN SING executive producer, Graham Smith-White.

The SUN SiNG project had these goals: 1) lift up the pipeline resistance and future lovin’ hearts of those long fighting the proposed Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines with a magical theatrical concert 2) tell the story of these corrupt robberies to the newcomer 3) create a new no pipeline anthem and song video for the work and messaging ahead for all pipeline fights everywhere 4) strengthen our ability to respond as a state and as a region to this serious threat 5) create a yes for the #SolaRevolution to come 6) have the SUN SiNG collective create trust, ensemble and an entire body of no pipeline music and art 7) empower new artists for ARTivism Virginia and 8) raise money to support Interfaith Alliance for Climate Justice and the work ahead.

Thanks to all who made this possible. There were 60 volunteers in and in front of that theater on April 26 and every single one of them was generous, talented and essential. Together everyone joined joy with concern, and you are invited to do the same.

For “Who Will Sing for Me?” video portraits of each member of the SUN SiNG collective and a you tube link for this video go to ARTivism Virginia on you tube here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgOuscF5Bp8pMXD89KF68Qg/videos

Here’s just a glimpse of the power and magic brought to the SUN SiNG Concert: April 26 by ALL THE SAINTS THEATER COMPANY under the direction and with the creations of Lily Lamberta, SUN SiNG collective member. And this was just inside!