playing for change

One day while walking down the 3rd street promenade in Santa Monica, Mark Johnson heard Roger Ridley singing “Stand By Me” in the distance.

Mark ran to witness the performance and realized that Roger's voice, soul, and passion had to be shared with the rest of the world.

Mark built a mobile recording studio, equipped with all the same equipment used in the best studios, and after recording Roger, Mark traveled to wherever the music took him: France, Italy, Israel, India, Africa and all around the globe.

It was Roger's performance of “Stand By Me” in Santa Monica that sent “Playing for Change” off on its mission: “to connect the world through music.” 

Playing for Change is a movement created to inspire, connect, and bring peace to the world through music. 

The idea for this project arose from the belief that music has the power to break down boundaries and overcome distances between people. That, regardless of people’s geographic, political, economic, spiritual or ideological backgrounds, music has the universal power to transcend and unite us as one human race.

With this truth firmly fixed in their minds, the Playing For Change creators set out to share it with the world.

Over the course of their project, they decided it was not enough for the crew just to record and share this music with the world; they wanted to create a way to give back to the musicians and their communities that had shared so much with them.

And so they created the Playing for Change Foundation, a separate nonprofit corporation whose mission is to do just that. 

Musicians from all over the world are brought together to perform benefit concerts that build music and art schools in communities in need of inspiration and hope.

In addition to benefit concerts, the Playing for Change band also performs shows around the world.

When audiences see and hear musicians who have traveled thousands of miles from their homes, united in purpose and chorus on one stage, everyone is touched by music's unifying power. 

And now, everyone can participate in this transformative experience by joining the Playing for Change Movement.

People are hosting screenings, musicians are holding benefit concerts of every size, fans are spreading the message of Playing for Change through the media, and this is only the beginning.

They connect the world through music!

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