Music that makes a difference

Southampton’s Jonathan Sprout releases album ‘Passions,’ songs correlate with films about global issues

Music to our ears: Southampton’s Jonathan Sprout recently released the album ‘Passions’ – the first in a series of inspirational, New Age instrumental compositions. Source: Jonathan Sprout

Jonathan Sprout, of Southampton, has had quite the varied music career throughout his 40 years in the industry, transitioning from a “regular” singer-songwriter to a children’s performer. Did we mention he also has a degree in psychology?

Now, Sprout is celebrating yet another creative transition, one he hopes will have a positive impact on all ages and demographics around the world. On Feb. 1, the Grammy-nominated artist released the album Passions – the first in a series of inspirational, New Age instrumental compositions. The second is set to be released in February 2021.

Passions is under the umbrella of Sprout’s new organization Force For Good, which is releasing one song-film a month to correlate with each track. Force for Good is comprised of Sprout and a handful of talented musicians, film makers and editors, who share the same mission – to unite humanity in solving global problems.

“It’s hard to sort of put us in a little pocket, describe who we are. But we’re trying to be doers of good and be optimists to promote peace, equality and compassion for all,” Sprout said. “We’re trying to be people who are using their art to help promote important things in the world.”

Each song-film, available on YouTube on the first of every month, addresses a pressing issue, and includes a brief introduction by Sprout to encourage action through education and inspiration. The films are being offered as promotional tools to be utilized by like-minded nonprofit organizations with concerns about similar issues.

For example, January’s piece, entitled “Ice,” is about the melting of the polar ice caps, climate change and how we must do something to lower our carbon footprint. February’s film “Harmony” promotes racial and international peace.

“I am a strong believer in the power of optimism and, having traveled a lot around the planet, my experience has been that most people are very good people. And I think you would be led to believe otherwise if you watch television all the time, if you watch the news on TV,” Sprout said. “I think most people just want to get along, and so our piece is about that. It’s meant to encourage people to get along with each other and not to give up.”

“Courage,” available in March, promotes gender equality and standing up for women’s rights.

“Women’s rights are human rights. I’m a strong feminist and a believer that there’s so many things that are not fair, still,” Sprout said. “A black woman in America will make 63 cents for the same work that a white man earns $1 for. So, there’s a tremendous disparity that needs to be addressed, and these are the things we’re trying to help bring about as a Force For Good.”

Sprout founded the organization after dedicating the past 25 years to creating music for children about American heroes, with his four albums garnering 26 national awards. He studied the character traits of real heroes – honesty, compassion, courage and perseverance – and launched Force For Good to put those qualities into action. The uplifting music and films are meant to encourage personal and global wellbeing, happiness and respect for the environment.

According to Sprout, Passions, its corresponding films and the upcoming 2021 album have been nearly four years in the making.

“I decided to hold off releasing anything until we got most of the first two albums and each of their song-films made,” he said. “I’ve been chomping at the bit. It’s a very challenging, emotional thing to have this and hold onto it for so long. But I’ve been wanting to get it all lined up and completed so that when it does come out, I won’t be in the studio working on it all the time. I could be out there promoting the causes.”

The Force For Good crew was thrilled to show “Ice” in November at a climate crisis conference, hosted by PennEnvironment. The hope is to continue appearances such as this throughout 2020.

“I’ve never before created anything that feels so close to my heart and the beliefs I live by. As the founder of Force For Good, it’s my intention to recognize and encourage great people and organizations doing great things. We want to use our music and films to help empower them to succeed,” Sprout said. “We’ve all been trying to grapple with some of the challenges that people are facing in this world. We’re creatively and artistically addressing them to inspire our viewers and listeners to act.”

Passions is available on CD Baby, Amazon, iTunes and wherever digital music is sold. Visit ForceForGoodMusic.com for more information. Search “Force For Good” on YouTube to view the song-films.

Samantha Bambino can be reached at sbambino@newspapermediagroup.com