Sharon Van Etten Releases Song Dedicated To Orlando Pulse Shooting Victims

By Aaron Brophy 8/26/16 |

Sharon Van Etten — photo credit: Laura Crosta
Sharon Van Etten has release new song "Not Myself" dedicated to the victims of the Orlando Pulse shooting.

The shooting, which took place June 12 when lone gunman Omar Mateen shot and killed 49 people and injured 53 at a gay club Pulse in Orlando, Florida, is considered the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.

Van Etten, who has worked with a who's who of indie rock names like The National, Beirut, The Walkmen and Shearwater over the years, is selling the song on Bandcamp for $1 US ($1.29 CAD) "or more." Proceeds from the song's sale will go towards Everytown For Gun Safety Support Fund.

Everytown's mission "seeks to improve our understanding of the causes of gun violence and the means to reduce it." The organization aims to use research and evidence-based policies to help reduce gun violence. Some things they support include criminal background checks for gun sales, restricting gun access to those who commit domestic violence and limits on carrying guns in public.

"I was home with my parents in New Jersey when I heard of the shooting at the nightclub in Florida," said Van Etten in a statement. "Hate, violence, and intolerance has always upset me, but I haven't been this overwhelmed with sadness and disbelief in a long time. The victims were only trying to be themselves and be comfortable and safe in their surroundings. That safety was violated out of fear and with a gun.  
"I originally wanted to raise money for the victims and their families, but I knew the issue was bigger than this. I wrote 'Not Myself' for the victims of this horrific event, but I chose to support the research and awareness work of Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund: a movement of Americans working together to end gun violence and build safer communities."
"In the memory of those trying to be safe and be themselves, I hope we can all come together to help prevent another massacre like this and end gun violence."

The sparse, hymnal, piano-driven song features Van Etten pleading "Please, darling... I want you to be yourself around me" before ending with the repeated phrase "Praise, praise, praise" and, finally, "Take me to the night."

Listen to "Not Myself"

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