Former Pink Floyd frontman David Gilmour tweeted support for Ukraine on Tuesday. “Russian soldiers, stop killing your brothers,” he wrote. “There will be no winners in this war.” He punctuated his message by saying, “Putin must go.”
In the tweet, he included the lyric video for his 2015 antiwar song, “In Any Tongue.” Its words, written by Polly Samson — Gilmour’s wife and collaborator since Pink Floyd’s Division Bell album — describe soldiers dying and children crying. “I hear ‘Mama’ sounds the same in any tongue,” goes one refrain. The song bears a personal significance to Gilmour and Samson as a couple, in the context of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, as Gilmour explained in his tweet. “My daughter-in-law is Ukrainian, and my granddaughters want to visit and know their beautiful country,” he wrote. “Stop this before it is all destroyed.”
Russian soldiers, stop killing your brothers. There will be no winners in this war.
My daughter-in-law is Ukrainian and my grand-daughters want to visit and know their beautiful country. Stop this before it is all destroyed.
Putin must go pic.twitter.com/VE4oMsUIRf
— David Gilmour (@davidgilmour) March 1, 2022
In the past week, musicians around the world have spoken out against Russian President Vladimir Putin. Stevie Nicks likened Putin to Hitler in a personal missive in which she said she was worried about a Ukrainian friend. “I have been crying ever since [I read about the invasion],” she wrote. Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider, whose grandfather was Ukrainian, also gave his support to Ukrainians using his band’s “We’re Not Gonna Take It.” “People are asking me why I endorsed the use of ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It’ for the Ukrainian people and did not for the anti-maskers,” he wrote on Twitter. “Well, one use is for a righteous battle against oppression; the other is an infantile feet-stomping against an inconvenience.”
Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova launched a crypto fundraiser for Ukrainians that raised nearly $3 million in 24 hours. “It’s obvious that Putin is just a dangerous dictator who has to be stopped,” she told Rolling Stone. “He’s not just dangerous for people in his country, he’s dangerous for peace globally. A lot of people have been half-joking, talking about this invasion starting the Third World War. But it’s a war in Europe. It’s not a joke. It’s full-blown war.”
Musicians in Ukraine are also worried about their future and are parsing their country’s relationship with Russia, following the 2014 revolution that made it a democracy. “Think of the paradox of all this,” Kyrylo Brener, who plays in the Kharkiv-based power trio Kat, told Rolling Stone. “Putin and Russian government, they hate us and don’t want us to exist. But at the same time, they created this nation and the mindset of the nation. Before 2014, I think many people, including myself, were just living our lives. After all these things happened, your mindset changes and we started finding our identity. And this impacted music as well.”