Filmmaker Mark Johnson had a simple idea – that the world can be connected through music, promoting peace.
Starting in Santa Monica, California, Mark captured a performance by legendary street blues singer Roger Ridley, then he took the show on the road. In New Orleans, he put headphones on Grandpa Elliott, who harmonized with Ridley’s soulful rendition of “Stand By Me.” And he didn’t stop there. Traveling the world, Johnson captured riffs and drums and cellos in Russia, Spain, Venezuela and South Africa, all building to a thrilling mix of the song.
Along the way, Johnson formed a foundation, “Playing for Change” which funds music schools, the first of which was just completed in South Africa. An album with other classics and traditional folk songs is climbing the Billboard chart, and a documentary will debut next month — proving that music is the common language of us all.