Morello Takes on Taco Bell

Audioslave guitarist also planning Axis of Justice show

March 4, 2004 12:00 AM ET
Audioslave guitarist Tom Morello and Coup frontman Boots Riley are joining Florida farm workers in protesting Taco Bell at the restaurant's Irvine, California, headquarters on Friday.

Morello will join the Taco Bell Truth Tour's Southern California stop as a speaker and performer, under his Nightwatchman guise, to draw attention to a wage dispute between the fast food company and farm workers who provide its vegetables.

"A real change comes from regular people courageously standing up for their rights at work, at home, and in the streets and that's what we'll be doing," Morello says. "Farm workers in Immokalee Florida are getting paid starvation wages for picking Taco Bell's vegetables. Taco Bell is getting rich off the backs of these impoverished farmers."

Morello and Riley will re-team at the inaugural date of Axis of Justice Concert Series, March 31st at the Troubadour in Los Angeles Troubadour. Morello started the Axis of Justice activist organization with System of a Down frontman Serj Tankian, who will also play at the event along with former MC5 guitarist Wayne Kramer.

"It was in part inspired by [last fall's] Tell Us the Truth Tour and that format of bringing artists from different backgrounds together with a common political perspective to have a great time, play music and fan the flames of discontent," Morello says. "The focus of the night is great rebel music and having a great time. When Woody Guthrie and Leadbelly used to jam together is the model we're looking at."

Morello said he expects the series to generate between $10,000 and $15,000 per show, which will be used to aid a variety of causes, including homeless shelters, food banks and organizing other political events.

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