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Swansea resident Vicky O’Neon raises her drumsticks for ‘Europe for Ukraine’ band

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Swansea resident Vicky O’Neon, a native of Finland, is raising her drumsticks for Europe for Ukraine – a music initiative that gathers musicians from 50 European countries to record an original composition in support of Ukraine.

O’Neon, co-founder of the non-profit music organisations Girls Rock London and Rock Donna, has worked with Hans Zimmer and Nile Rodgers.

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O’Neon, a graduate of Drum Tech in London (now called BIMM), believes that we should never stand quiet in the face of injustice.

“It’s easy to feel powerless towards what is happening and difficult as an individual to make a difference. But as a society we have to do everything in our power to show support for Ukrainians to stop this war,” O’Neon said. 

Songwriter and Klaukkala resident Amelia Ray, founder of Europe for Ukraine, discovered O’Neon in 2021 through O’Neon’s “Drumming Through The Decades” series on YouTube. When Ray had the idea to write and record a song in support of Ukraine, she remembered O’Neon’s series, and asked her to participate.

Drummer, Vicky O’Neon (Image: Vicky O’Neon)

Ray wrote “Hands in Hearts” in multiple languages to highlight the diversity of the European community. The song will be released on Ukrainian Constitution Day, 28 June 2022.

Hands in Hearts,” is an opportunity for me as a musician to raise my voice for Ukraine against this war together with fellow musicians all over Europe,” O’Neon said.  

The Europe for Ukraine band also includes composer and performer, Adi Mulahalilović – who penned Bosnia and Herzegovina’s 1994 Eurovision Song Contest entry –, North Macedonian classical pianist Mimoza Keka, Franc Moody bassist Rosetta from Italy, and Ukrainian violinist Yuliia Kryzhanivska. Participating musicians will record their performances remotely.

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A portion of the proceeds raised from the release of “Hands in Hearts” will be donated to the UNHCR for humanitarian relief efforts prioritised for Ukraine.

For more information, please visit: www.europeforukraine.com  

(Lead image: Vicky O’Neon)

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