Godin Guitars has announced their sustained support of fellow Montrealers Arcade Fire in their continuing efforts and charitable contributions to the country of Haiti following the devastating earthquake of 2010. The Canadian guitar manufacturer has donated a second round of acoustic guitars to be distributed in and around the Central Plateau region of Haiti by Kanpe, an organization dedicated to rebuilding Haiti.
Similarly to the initial guitar donation of 33 guitars back in March 2011, this second round featured 40 acoustic guitars, including steel string models from Godin’s Simon & Patrick line along with nylon string models from their Lapatrie line. The donation also included a stand up bass provided by Arcade Fire and a generous number of instructional guitar books donated by the good people at www.Editions-CoupdePouce.com
During a visit to Haiti in early 2012, members of Arcade Fire had the chance to see the guitars, which had already been distributed, in the hands of some of the young people in the area. “We just got back from an incredible trip to Haiti where we saw the Godin guitars that were contributed in action! said Arcade Fire violist/violinist, Marika Anthony-Shaw. “There is a real music scene developing in a rural area called Cange, one of the poorest areas of Haiti, where a number of young people are really getting good!” Anthony-Shaw further said, “In Haiti, we witnessed such a remarkable and pure artistic sense. There is incredible vitality and spirit despite all the tragedy and poverty, and music plays a huge part in this. The guitars from Godin are bringing a tremendous amount of joy to everyone we've had the pleasure of passing them on to and we really want to give thanks on behalf of all these people for this gift of music.”
The initial donation of acoustic guitars included models from Godin’s Seagull, Norman, Art & Lutherie and Lapatrie brands. These were distributed amongst several regions in Haiti including a village in the mountains called Bay Tourib, the above-mentioned rural area of Cange, and a learning center in the Zanmi Beni facility, located just outside of Port-au-Prince. Opened after the earthquake, Zanmi Beni is a home for abandoned and physically and developmentally disabled children in Haiti.
“It’s certainly inspiring to hear that these guitars are having such a positive impact on those affected”, says Godin’s Media & Artist Relations representative, Richard Bunze. “If providing guitars and the ability to make music can bring some form of joy to their lives after such devastation, then we are happy to do so.”
Haiti is a country very close to Arcade Fire’s hearts, especially that of singer/multi-instrumentalist Régine Chassagne, whose family emigrated to Canada from Haiti before she was born. As well, the band’s charitable work in Haiti dates back to 2007, when they began working with Partners in Health by donating proceeds from their own concert ticket sales to the cause. Along with P.I.H., the band also stands alongside the Montreal based Kanpe, in their mission to help rebuild the impoverished nation following the aftermath of the deadly earthquake of January 12th, 2010.
Montreal’s Arcade Fire had monumental success after the release of their critically acclaimed album “The Suburbs” (Merge Records) in 2010. The album garnered the indie rockers international accolades and awards, including taking home the big prize for “Album of the Year” at the 2011 Grammy Awards, N.M.E Awards and Juno Award ceremonies, amongst others such as the Brit Awards for “Best International Album” & “Best International Group”.
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