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Artists offer songs to celebrate the Dalai Lama’s 80th birthday: Sting, Elbow, Kate Bush and Peter Gabriel among artists contributing songs to album

June 22, 2015

The Art of Peace Foundation, with artists including Sting, Kate Bush, Peter Gabriel and Elbow, has created a collection of songs for the Dalai Lama’s 80th birthday. The album is a celebration of the Dalai Lama’s philosophy of peace, non-violence and compassion.

The collection, entitled The Art of Peace (#SongsForTibet), is in harmony with Tibet’s rich culture, in which Tibetan singers traditionally express their devotion to the exiled religious leader the Dalai Lama through song despite the oppressive political climate and lack of freedoms.

Proceeds of ‘Songs for Tibet’ will go towards Tibetan cultural-preservation projects and a unique scheme providing vocational education to Tibetans.

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Cover photo of the album

Tibetan singers jailed after release of songs about self-immolation, Dalai Lama

Singers Pema Trinley, 22, and Chakdor, 32, from Me’urama nomadic village in Ngaba (Chinese: Aba) were first detained in July 2012 days after the release of the album, entitled ‘The Agony of Unhealed Wounds’. News of their sentencing in February has only emerged recently. Their music DVD included songs in praise of the Dalai Lama, exiled head of Kirti monastery Kirti Rinpoche, and Sikyong Lobsang Sangay, the Tibetan political leader in exile. The singers’ families have not been able to see them since they were imprisoned, and their current location is unknown.

A musician called Khenrap and lyricist Nyagdompo who worked on the album have disappeared, according to the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD, ‘So many myriad hellish sufferings’: Persecution of Tibetan artists).

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