Ron Gallo Calls Out Amazon On Their Own Platform for Not Paying Artists, Results in Compensation

I am going to preface this article by saying this : The purpose of this is one thing – to promote artists, creatives, essential workers and human beings in general to value themselves in a culture and system that is designed for those not in the highest ranks to devalue themselves and therefore be taken advantage of. This is a trickle up system. We are sharing this story as an example to encourage others to speak up in situations that seem unfair or unbalanced – even if the powers above are not aware of what they are doing. We could find a million reasons to bash Amazon but it is pointless to the real point here. Since this story will probably get squashed – Press release copied below.

After being told “NO” when asked if there could payment for his performance, Ron Gallo agreed to a pro-bono livestream gig for Amazon Music solely to use their platform to call them out, talk about the value of artists, perform songs from upcoming album “PEACEMEAL” and do karaoke. Shortly after the performance Amazon came back offering to fairly pay each artist on the bill.
This past weekend, Ron Gallo played a livestream for Amazon Music. Gallo opened the show reading from a fake script he wrote saying it was given to him by Amazon to use as guidelines for the show that said “Be sure to suppress all negative feelings even though we said “NO” when you asked to be paid a small fee for todays performance amidst a pandemic where artists can not make a living and our corporations profits skyrocketed – and in parentheses (we are very tight on cash right now, we hope you understand). Please maintain a positive composure and express gratitude through facial expressions that say you are proud and lucky to be here performing on Amazon Music twitch channel for maximum exposure. 

He then proceeded to make further commentary between playing songs from his recent EP “PLEASE DON’T DIE” and upcoming album “PEACEMEAL”, doing karaoke and listing all the things in the room that he purchased on Amazon. Gallo says during the stream “I guess the mentality here is that if an artist requests to be paid they will just find someone that devalues themself enough to say yes. And here we are baby playing for free. But I really hope Amazon recovers, I know it’s been tough times for you, I think you’re gonna come back, then we can revisit, we can do this again, there’s gonna be some budget it’s gonna be nice, I’ll go right down to Whole Foods.”On the livestream, Gallo provides this statement:

“My goal here in speaking my mind and calling out Amazon publicly on their bullshit on their own platform really started out as a necessity for my soul in mindlessly agreeing to a pro-bono livestream for a trillion dollar company –  it never sits well with me to sit back and stay quiet if thing’s aren’t right, I’m just not capable of it. So, this helped make the whole thing tolerable and give it an actual purpose. Plus, I’ve always gotten a big weird joy out of stirring shit up from the inside if it’s rooted in being honest.  In the bigger picture and why I am sharing this all publicly is I want to encourage every artist (and person) to value themself and speak up in situations where we are devalued because it saturates just about every aspect of the music business and beyond and we just consider it normal and it gets into our psyche where we actually begin to devalue ourselves.  This mentality of us needing to impress or get approval from all this big machinery is backwards because art and artists are the blood of this whole operation, just like all essential workers, but for some reasons we are the only ones that don’t think that and are not treated as such.  I’m not expecting to forever change the face of Amazon and it’s practices but this could be a starting point and I never would have expected they would come back offering fair compensation after calling them out – but here the most important thing for me is to just get this message out and show other artists and people that keeping things real might always get the best results and no one should be afraid to speak up.”

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