By James Pleasant
Singer-songwriter and environmental activist Jack Johnson is back on the road for the first time since 2014 for a North American summer tour, which kicks off June 17 in Chicago and makes its way to the West Coast with a stop at the Hollywood Bowl on July 16.
Johnson’s 2017 tour will support more than140 non-profits through his environmental campaign and social action network, All At Once. One of the primary aims of Johnson’s tour is to provide greener alternatives during his shows in order to lessen their impacts on the environment and the cities in which he’s performing.
Since 2007, all of Johnson’s shows have offered concert-goers free water courtesy of water refill stations in order to curb the use of disposable plastic.
In 2014, the “Banana Pancakes” singer launched the Reusable Pint Program, an initiative designed to provide fans with alternatives to plastic cups and bottles. Instead, fans can purchase stainless steel cups, and as an added bonus, those who buy the cups receive discounts on beverage refills.
In addition, Johnson is implementing many other greening efforts in his 2017 summer tour. Sustainable bio-diesel tour vehicles, recycling, composting, and eco-friendly merchandise are just some of the programs that will help lessen the tour’s impact on the environment. The tour will also source local, organic food as part of a “farm to stage” program, offer alternative transportation incentives and bike valets.
Throughout his career, Johnson has made environmental activism a top priority and uses his platform as a popular artist to make a difference. “Growing up [in Hawaii] I had a profound love for the natural world and the environment and the ocean,” Johnson told Music for Good last year.
“As I got older, I found myself in this position [as a musician] where I suddenly had the ability to gather lots of people at once.” Since then, Johnson has creatively leveraged his public platform to inform people about how they can implement positive change in their communities, and has “walked the walk,” donating 100 percent of the profits from his tours between 2008-2013 to environmental nonprofit organizations.
He also founded two nonprofits—Johnson Ohana Charitable Foundation, which supports charitable organizations that focus on the environment, art and music education, and Kokua Hawaii Foundation, which funds environmental education for schools in Hawaii and teaches children about health and nutrition.
Listen to Johnson’s new tune, “Fragments.”