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WPGM Commentary: Bri Schillings Wants You To Talk About Climate Change On ‘Ignorance Is Violence’

Hi friends, Bri Schillings here, environmental artist, professionally known as Sweet Imperfections. I invite you on a journey through my new single, “Ignorance Is Violence”. This song serves as a call to action for climate justice, tackling the profound impact we have on the environment and the consequences we are facing.

The creative process behind writing the lyrics to “Ignorance Is Violence” was a collaborative effort between my partner Brandon Sudweeks and myself during our three month summer road trip in 2021, traveling around Western United States in our van, connecting to the earth and witnessing first hand, the effects of global warming.

Fires engulfed the Pacific northwest, temperatures reached all-time highs and smoke filled the air, following us from Oregon all the way to South Dakota. We didn’t see a blue sky for two months. We were devastated and greatly impacted by the reality of how our ignorance over the past century had created the situation we are in.

The song melody and Lyrics came together while we were in Glacier National Park, looking out at smoke filled hills and a blood red sun. I sat, with my guitar, fingerpicking a riff as Brandon said “smoke filled hills covering the earth everywhere we go… feels like the whole world is getting ready to explode“.

I sang that line over the riff and from there, we continued dialoguing everything we were observing. At one point Brandon said “Ignorance Is Violence”! I knew that would be the chorus.

I wanted this song to be thought provoking while reflecting a sense of urgency, to pull on your heartstrings and fill you with motivation.I brought in my dear friends and otherworldly producers Chad Shlosser and Micheal Johnson, who never cease to WOW me with their conceptual insight and dynamic, instrumental arrangements. Together we arranged each instrument to reflect the tone and voice throughout the song.

The wailing guitar line (performed by Chad Shlosser) cries for help, a driving beat (performed by Micheal Johnson) reflects the feeling of urgency, time ticking. The hammond (performed by Adam MacDougall) and the keys (performed by yours truly) along with the children choir (performed by the Seattle Children’s Choir) as a beacon of hope.

The video was created in collaboration with my friend and brilliant photographer, Christopher Hoffee. He captured the intense passion of my performance with a simple shot of me singing against a white wall. We didn’t want to oversaturate the video with imagery and lose the lyrical message.

We start and end with an hourglass as a reminder that time is running out and we still have time to make a difference. I chose clips of current climate change issues from wildfires, plastic waste on beaches, icebergs melting and air pollution. You see clips of children’s faces as the children’s voices ring out in the chorus of the song, a reminder that our actions today shape the world of tomorrow.

I hope this song encourages talk about climate change and encourages people to do something about it. It’s time we realize that every choice we make in this life is a ripple, it affects us as a whole. Change is possible! You are the change! Thank you for supporting the power music has to influence and bring attention to current events and create movements. Big Love, Bri

Watch the video for “Ignorance Is Violence” below and stream it everywhere else here.

Word by Sweet Imperfections // Follow her on Instagram + Facebook

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