Liberian rising star releases album heralding peace, unity and bright hopes for Liberia”
Liberia’s Michael K. Gray, a rising star among Liberians in the Diaspora with a decade and a half of service at the United States Congress, found a way to capture his hopes for a renewed Liberia in the lyrics of a recently recorded album, “Sweet Liberians”.
A song writer, and singer, Gray wrote “Sweet Liberians” during the dark years of the Liberian civil conflict. The lyrics and sounds not only speak to the horrors of the war, but also point to the post-war fragile state of peace and security, and development in Africa’s oldest independent nation.
Michael serves as the Senior Advisor in the Congressional Office of U.S. Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. (Democrat- 10th Congressional District of New Jersey) in Washington, DC. He also serves as District Director of Congressman Payne’s Congressional District Office in Newark, New Jersey, where he administers the constituent affairs of over 800,000 constituents.
Amidst glaring national failures and the dire consequences facing the vast majority of Liberians, Michael foresees a better Liberia, based upon the resilience of Liberians arising from a long history of misrule.
Michael adds, “I realize the situation in Liberia has not improved much in decades.”
He notes, “From the civil wars to the Ebola epidemic, harsh social and economic conditions, poor governance, and injustice continue to plague our beloved Liberia.” His unwavering belief in the future of Liberia is artistically captured in brilliant songwriting. He adds, “for a country of bountiful human and natural resources, mass poverty, poor health, and high illiteracy should not be the order of the day in Liberia”.
Liberia is endowed with abundance of untapped natural resources. Moreover, the country receives sustained goodwill and assistance from the international community, most especially from the United States of America and most significantly from Liberians in the diaspora, mainly in the form of remittances as lifeblood to a fragile economy.
Michael is optimistic about the future of Liberia, and the tenacity of Liberians at home and abroad to make things right with the help of institutional friends of Liberia. Michael maintains, “I never stopped believing that Liberia will rise again in peace, unity and prosperity despite the growing generational deficits in human advancement, physical development, and economic progress”.
Liberia is adrift and no longer the beacon of hope for many nations. Notwithstanding, he is proud to reinforce to audiences abroad that Liberia was a chartered member of the League of Nations in 1919, founding member of the United Nations (UN), and founding member of the Organizational of African (OAU) and the Africa Union (AU).
In addition, Liberia cast the deciding vote creating the State of Israel, and played an integral role in the independence of many African countries. Michael asks, “when and where did Liberians go wrong”, and notes that “Liberians need to stop standing in Liberia’s way, and they need to step up or step out and put the homeland first and foremost. “Sweet Liberians” is a song in love with Liberians. More importantly, it is rallying cry for Liberians to live in peace unity for the benefit of all Liberians.”
The net proceeds from “Sweet Liberians” will go to the Liberia Scholarship Fund of Save Our Nations (SON).