Joe Solo and the Hatfield Brigade have released a Christmas single, with all sales going to struggling communities in South Yorkshire.
Leslie Moore, a former Hatfield Miner and member of the Hatfield Brigade, said of They Could Not Break Us, which is out to buy now:
When we decided to record this song (which is going to be one of many planned each year until we have enough to fill a full album) we were mindful of the punitive measures continuing in many mining communities. We decided to sing about the fact that for all the deprivation, the poverty & punishment meted out across the coalfields as a result of our communities daring to stand and fight against the full might of the state for a decent future, we are still here. Our spirit was never broken fully – our pockets were emptied, our future stolen, our children cast into the wilderness, yet we are here in defiance singing, as it’s in the most part all we can do to get our voice heard. But it’s a gesture to show our children and grandchildren they must never give up just like mine & your grandparents fought on. We will not sink into the history books as cowed & beaten people. They stole our jobs, our community cohesion and our pensions that we paid for. So we fight on for justice and fair play from politicians that, in the main, do not understand the meaning of those words. This song, although recorded in Stainforth, South Yorkshire (the home of ‘Hatfield Main Colliery’) could be the history of any community in the UK’s coal fields, from Kent to the valleys of Wales, to our brothers homelands in Scotland. And make no mistake – we are a brotherhood of miners, who respect & have defended each other throughout the generations. Make this song your own; this is your village, your town, your community. And wherever working men defend their rights you will find the miners at your side.
You can read about They Could Not Break Us in The Canary’s coverage of the track. And make sure you buy the single here.