Guest Blogger: Mark Johnson on PLAYING FOR CHANGE
(Photo by Robin Holland)
Please note that the views and opinions expressed by Mark Johnson are not necessarily the views and opinions held by Bill Moyers or BILL MOYERS JOURNAL.
PLAYING FOR CHANGE is a movement uniting people all over the world through music and inspiration. It all began about seven years ago as my producing partner, Whitney Kroenke Burditt, and I assembled a group of like-minded people with cameras and a mobile recording studio. We embarked on a journey across the globe in search of music and human connections.
We started the journey with the idea that with an open mind and positive intentions we can find ways of uniting people as the human race. Music has always been the universal language and we followed its path from city streets to Native Indian reservations, African villages and the Himalayan Mountains. I could never have imagined that we would discover a world with so much love, hope and inspiration. In a world with so much focus on our differences I am proud to have discovered that people everywhere believe in creating a better world together.
Throughout our travels we created songs around the world such as “Stand By Me” and “One Love.” These songs and videos offer musicians who have never met in person the ability to collaborate and unite through the power of music. We also interviewed all of the musicians and learned stories of how music has helped to persevere through struggles all over the world. These collections of songs and interviews serve as a reminder of the power of the human spirit as well as a means of further illustrating our global collective conscience. We live in a world with way too many starving children and way too many warring nations. As a human race we come together for birth, and we come together for death, what brings us together in between is up to us. Stop and listen to the universal language of music and bring that positive energy with you everywhere we go.
The vision of PLAYING FOR CHANGE extends far beyond just music and film. We have established the Playing For Change Foundation to build music and art schools for kids around the world. We have recently returned from Gugulethu, South Africa where we constructed the first Playing For Change Music School. We plan to build many more schools, each equipped with cameras and a recording studio so supporters all over the world can watch recitals and performances in the schools we are building together. We can use these schools as sources of inspiration and a means of breaking down negative stereotypes among people everywhere. In the words of one of the artists featured in PLAYING FOR CHANGE, Vusi Mahlasela, “The world is immigrating into a global village, the question is how much do you want to belong.” Learn more about PLAYING FOR CHANGE, and together we can accomplish much more than we ever can apart.
Tag(s): guest blogger