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Playing for Change

Playing for Change is a multimedia music project created by the American producer and sound engineer Mark Johnson with his Timeless Media Group, that seeks to bring together musicians from around the world. Playing For Change also created a separate non-profit organization called the Playing For Change Foundation which builds music schools for children around the world.


The project started in 2004 with the organization’s self described goal to “inspire, connect, and bring peace to the world through music”. The creators of the project, Mark Johnson and Enzo Buono, traveled around the world to places such as New Orleans, Barcelona, South Africa, India, Nepal, the Middle East and Ireland. Using a mobile recording equipment, the duo recorded local musicians performing the same song, interpreted into their own style. Among the artists participating, or openly involved in the project, include Vusi Mahlasela, Louis Mhlanga, Clarence Bekker, Tal Ben Ari (Tula), Bono, Keb’ Mo’, David Broza, Manu Chao and Grandpa Elliott.

The project’s first single “Stand by Me”, began with a Santa Monica street performer named Roger Ridley (now deceased). The duo traveled the world, recording more and more musicians. All of these versions were considered for mixing a pastiche final version.


The project’s “Stand by Me” video has been popular online, with over 30 million hits on YouTube.

The Playing For Change Foundation

The Playing for Change Foundation is a non-profit organization 501(c)3, dedicated to creating and supporting music schools, principally in developing countries. 3 music schools and a total of 7 music programs have been created since 2008:

CD/DVD sets

A CD/DVD compilation Playing For Change: Songs Around The World was released in 2009 on the Concord Music Group label. The CD has 10 songs. The DVD has seven tracks, including video versions of five of the songs that appeared on the CD, plus a video film, “The Playing for Change Foundation”. The DVD also contains a three-minute trailer of the documentary film “Peace Through Music”.

In October 2009 an 83 minute documentary film was released on DVD: “Peace Through Music”, directed by Mark Johnson and Jonathan Walls. The directors and their crew travelled the world recording and filming musicians in places such as: USA, Barcelona, Ireland, Middle-East, India, Nepal, South Africa. The film includes the clips from the CD/DVD, interviews and musical performances.

The Playing For Change website also sells the tracks in MP3 format via download, although this is limited to US customers only. The album was also released on iTunes in April 2009

Source: Wikipedia

Playing for Change Official Website

Playing For Change Band Live Trailer

Sugar Sweet – Grandpa Elliott

Stand By Me

Bring It On Home


Three Little Birds

I’ve Got Dreams To Remember

Back To Your Roots

Redemption Song

One Love

Gimme Shelter

Chanda Mama

War No More Trouble

Somewhere Over The Rainbow

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  1. July 14th, 2011 at 08:32 | #1

    Muito bacana! Pequenas atitudes como esta realmente fazem vibrar o mundo para uma melhor integração e entendimento.



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