Famous slide guitar player and singer-songwriter Ry Cooder isn't just boycotting Arizona–he wrote a song, called “Quicksand,” as a response to Arizona's anti-immigrant law, SB 1070. Cooder describes the songs as a slow-burning rocker that tells the
story of six would-be immigrants making their way from Mexico to the
Arizona border. Today, “Quicksand” is on sale exclusively on iTunes,
and Cooder announced that all proceeds from the sale of his new single will be donated to the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF).
Cooder, who's known for using his songs to politically engage audiences, produced the 1996 album Buena Vista Social
Club. “Quicksand” features Cooder's son Joachim on drums,
with backup vocals by Lucina Rodgriguez and Fabiola Trujillo of the
Mexican roots band Los Cenzontles.
Cooder talks about the journey depicted in the song: “The Devil's Highway has been used by
migrants traveling on foot for over 100 years,” adding, “You should try it sometime. Out there,
temperatures can get above 130 degrees. If you fall down, you have
religious hallucinations, then you die, cooking from the inside out. If
you get lucky, you might make it to Yuma, but then what?”
You can find a
link to Ry Cooder's page featuring “Quicksand” here