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DJ Matoma uses Coachella billboards to raise awareness for war in Ukraine

Metro logo Metro 19/04/2022 Lowenna Waters
DJ Matoma has been raising awareness at Coachella (Picture: Instagram/ matoma) © Provided by Metro DJ Matoma has been raising awareness at Coachella (Picture: Instagram/ matoma)

We’ve all heard of the movie Three Billboards, but now, DJ Matoma has used them in a different way at Californian music festival Coachella.

The 30-year-old Norwegian DJ has revealed that he’s purchased three billboards leading to the festival along the i-10 East freeway and that he’d originally planned to use them to promote his music.

However, in light of the ongoing war in Ukraine, he decided it would be more meaningful to use them to promote Music Saves UA, an organisation that’s providing relief to those who are in need in Ukraine.

Russia invaded neighbouring Ukraine in an unprovoked attack on February 24, in what is being described as the biggest war in Europe since World War Two.

The dispute has led to thousands of deaths, as well as displacing more than 11 million people, and has entered what Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky has described as a ‘new phase’ with a major bombardment of the Donbas region.

In a post on his Instagram account, DJ Matoma – real name Tom Stræte Lagergren – wrote: ‘DROP BEATS NOT BOMBS 💙💛 On your drive out to the desert this weekend please look out for these billboards we have put up for our friends at Music Saves UA.’

The billboards lined the highway on the way to the festival (Picture: Instagram/ matoma) © Provided by Metro The billboards lined the highway on the way to the festival (Picture: Instagram/ matoma)

‘Only a few years ago, I played at a festival called @atlasweekend in Ukraine to a beautiful crowd of people, just like those attending Coachella this year.

‘Those days of freedom are sadly gone for them, and now bombs rain down on their cities.

‘These very same people from Atlas Festival have converted their nightclub @atlas.37 to a humanitarian centre (!!!), providing supplies and care for those who need their help.’

DJ Matoma is well known for his EDM music (Picture: FilmMagic/FilmMagic) © Provided by Metro DJ Matoma is well known for his EDM music (Picture: FilmMagic/FilmMagic)

He continued: ‘This is one of the most inspiring things I’ve seen and gives me much needed hope. This club was once filled with free, happy people, and now driven with a true purpose of goodness it rises to a new, greater purpose. This is the power of music and love.

‘Please visit their website (link in bio) for more information and donate if you can ❤️🇺🇦’

Matoma is best known for performing in the field of electronica, funk, traditional house and R&B music.

He has seen success with his song All Night in collaboration with The Vamps, and I Don’t Dance with Enrique Iglesias.

When it comes to Coachella, 122 people were arrested during the first weekend of the 2022 festival, after it returned to Indio after a two-year hiatus.

Police have revealed that the number of arrests has risen by 13%, in comparison to the 2019 festival.

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