Keith Urban says questions need to be asked — and that’s why he performed Saturday (July 7) at one of the Live Earth concerts that took place throughout the world. During an interview at the show near New York City, Urban tells CMT Insider that global warming is not a political issue and how music may lead to conversations about the environment.
CMT: Why did you want to be a part of Live Earth? It’s the first event of its kind.
Urban: I think it’s a sad reality that it probably won’t be the last of its kind though. For me, I think it’s about asking questions. It’s an opportunity for people to start engaging in conversation about what this means and what they can do. We played somewhere last night where I mentioned we were coming up here to play, and there were a bunch of people that started booing. It took me by surprise because I realized that a lot of people still see this as a political issue. Which is absolutely insane.
It’s really important that we all start really digging in and asking questions. What is this really about? It’s really hard for me to think that some people can still deny that we’re in crisis … to think that we haven’t had an effect on our world. … You’ve got 6 billion people here. Every year we’re becoming more and more materialistic and spitting out more and more into this world. I think anybody could see. Common sense could tell us it’s time to start living our life a bit differently.
What is it about music that can help call attention to the message?
It’s the common link that can bring people from many different walks of life together and, in the process, maybe allow them to also find a common message. The bottom line is that if you live here on this earth, there’s a common message to be shared today. Today’s not about preaching. Hopefully it’s about stimulating conversation and asking questions.
You’re the main representative of country music here. How does that feel?
It’s an honor. It’s a huge honor. I think there’s a good amount of people out there in the country industry that don’t know a lot about what’s going on. So, again, today could be a good opportunity to find out.
Would you say that this event is something you’d like to see more of, but at the same time, wish there wasn’t a need?
Yeah, that’s always the way with events like this. They’re bittersweet. I wish there wasn’t the need for it, but there is, and who knows what will come of today. One thing is for sure — a lot of people are going to become more aware of the issues at hand. Again, it’s always about asking questions. Nobody has all the answers, but there’s so much information out there. So just source it out. The Internet is a wonderful place to be looking, and don’t just take it from one person. Just dig deep and ask questions.
Laura Douglas is a producer for CMT Insider.