Rock star advocating for Mother Nature


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Life on a 2,500-acre farm southeast of Atlanta is not how you would imagine most rock stars living, but Chuck Leavell would not have it any other way. That is because Leavell is not your average musician.

He was a member of the Allman Brothers band in the 1970's, but, for the past 25 years he has played with the Rolling Stones.

"It's been a wonderful ride... It really has. I have been so fortunate to work with so many different, wonderful artists," he told ABC7's Dan Ashley.

But, while touring the world and playing to packed arenas was exciting, it was also exhausting.

"That takes a lot of out of you. So, when I can go take that walk in the woods and commune with nature, wow, it's just a wonderful balance. It really provides a great balance for me," he said.

That balance has become a calling. These days Leavell is hearing a different kind of music. It is the sound of a world around him aching from years of environmental abuse. He recently sat down with ABC7's Dan Ashley in San Francisco to talk about his campaign to get others to care as much about the environment as he does.

"You know Dan, our environment is so important these days and it's on the minds of so many Americans and so many people across the world, you know, we're putting a lot of pressure on our planet, we all know that," he said.

Leavell has worked his Georgia tree farm for 30 years. He credits his life on the farm with changing his views on the world.

"I like to talk about what our trees and forests do for us. You know they give us materials to build our homes, our schools and churches. They give us the materials to make books, and magazines and newspapers. They clean our air. They clean our water. They provide home and shelter to all manner of wildlife," he said.

Leavell wanted to share his love for nature and encourage others to do more.

"We sort of realized that there is not an iconic website that deals with all things environmental, that helps people get the answers that they're looking for," he said.

The Mother Nature Network is an environmental news and information website launched in January. It is designed to be a one-stop shop for green needs. From environmental news to helpful tips on living greener, the Mother Nature Network is designed to bring global warming to every laptop, one person at a time.

Leavell is hoping the site will be his next big hit.

When asked if he was optimistic or a little fearful of what's happening he responded, "Well both, optimistic and fearful I think, but optimistic because now, at this particular time in our history, we're beginning to get it. You know, we're beginning to wake up and see what we can be doing," he said.

Written and produced by Ken Miguel

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