The Outlaw Ocean Music Project, run by the label Synesthesia Media, is a global and expansive effort to disseminate The Outlaw Ocean Project’s investigative journalism to a broader audience by releasing music inspired by their reporting at sea. Matthew Waldner aka joins the music project and in an interview discusses his goal to spread this message and instill within his listeners a deeper understanding and appreciation of the ocean.
Created by reporter Ian Urbina, the music project’s goal is to draw attention to human rights and environmental abuse at sea. Spanning genres from classical to hip-hop to electronic, hundreds of musicians from around the world have joined the effort. Many of the artists who participate in the project draw from an audio archive of field recordings captured by Urbina.
Waldner is an electronic musician with a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University in Digital Culture: Music. Using these sound samples collected throughout Urbina’s 5 year reporting at sea, Waldner paints an intimate picture of life and lawlessness at sea. He hopes that his album will direct people toward the journalism behind his newest release.
“I think that music and art, now more than ever, play a role in alerting the public of these issues - mostly because of things like social media and memes, that kind of internet culture,” Waldner said.
“What really amazes me about The Outlaw Ocean is that there’s so much corruption and lawlessness going on all over the world, and yet this is the first I’ve heard of these events and situations that Ian has not only written about, but lived through.”
- Matthew Waldner aka , The Outlaw Ocean Music Project
Since as early as second grade, Waldner dreamed of becoming an ocean biologist. This led to a deep respect and admiration for the world’s oceans that has only grown with time. This love of the sea found its way in the core motif of his newest album for The Outlaw Ocean Music Project, “Phonovoid,” he said. Waldner hopes his music creates a groundbreaking experience for his listeners.
“I want them to feel like they’ve made a discovery,” Waldner said. “To feel like they’re there in the moment of the piece, and each piece has its different moments.”
“Phonovoid” by for The Outlaw Ocean Music Project is available in all stores, including Apple Music, YouTube, and Spotify.
Synesthesia Media announces new waves of releases monthly on its social media.
About The Outlaw Ocean Project:
The Outlaw Ocean Project is a non-profit journalism organization founded by Ian Urbina that produces investigative stories about environmental and human rights concerns at sea globally. The project seeks to not only produce polished, narrative investigative journalism, but also to amplify that reportage by converting it into other other mediums to reach new audiences all over the world.