Ever since he heard some street musicians outside a Subway station move some 200-odd passerbys to tears, Mark Johnson has been thinking up a way to shine more light on the transformative power of music. After ten years, this Grammy winning filmmaker has got something. Something remarkable, actually: bringing together musicians from around the world -- blues singers in a waterlogged New Orleans, chamber groups in Moscow, a South African choir -- to collaborate on songs familiar and new, in the effort to foster a new, greater understanding of our commonality. As part of 'Playing for Change', this is moving remix of the popular 'Stand By Me' performed by more than 100 musicians from Tibet to Zimbabwe!


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  • H.Carol Schmidt

    The Universe sent this to me. I LOVE it. Thank you , merci, danke. gracias!! I am not a musician but I love music. My talent lies in painting and tangling.

  • Thomas Heath

    Hardly a day passes that I don't pick up my Echo Harp and play along...the energy and passion it brings into my life sustains me...this week my Maria and I passed 52 years of marriage...we just sold our business after 32 years, our lives as we approach 72 are fresh and new, although the past year has been marked by total knee surgery, an operation for a blood clot in March and a seizure on Christmas Eve, we still solder on helping people; teaching and sharing our wealth which keeps coming back to us no matter how much we give...God is great, life is good, keep the faith and God Bless You all...as Emerson wrote in his essay COMPENSATION, for everything you missed, you gained something else!

  • Cyntcha

    What I noticed? No women. Except for the backup singers at the end. Great idea, and joyful. But cmon, guys. I'm from New Orleans, and there are wonderful women street performers.

  • Mary Elizabeth Nordstrom

    What impressed me?The universality of it, the outstanding performance package and the confidence with which each individual participant invited the listener to "Stand By Me."

  • yelitza eide

    It's just so beautiful to hear all these amazing singers and instruments in tune with the same song, which I love to hear.

  • Harish M. Dalal

    I see this as a real peace mission.

  • Sam

    Music a soul moving medicine, moves the world just like that. It creates human harmony instantly

  • Sandip

    music varies worldwide,but having common soul with inner piece.`

  • michelle reid

    Music is universal~he has shone us how true it is~thank you for this wonderful messeage~

  • Timo

    Magic wow the power of music never fails :)

  • Suz

    Thank you for this beautiful video and music and thanks to the crew for capturing the simplicity and beauty of each musician. It's so uplifting to see people around the world becoming one in the moment. Made my day and inspired me to remember Who is standing by me...always💕🙏🏻

  • Jana G.

    The commitment of Mark Johnson, going all the way to bring a these people together, his idea, his effort and also the connection it delivers. Thanks a lot for sharing it, to Mark Johnson and all the musicians involved.

  • Stephen Vernon

    What inspired you about this video? I know just the exact friend to share this video with. And I pledge to do so immediately!! sV

  • Stephen Vernon

    WOW That video was so very powerful!!! That is the real meaning of what music should be!!!! SV

  • Kitty Seabolt

    Simplicity, honesty, emotionally touching, original music played for everyday folks on the streets - with only voluntary donations from the listeners for pay. Pure soul, pure emotion, unmatched by famous orchestras in touching our hearts! Love, love, love it!

  • patjos

    For me, this version so totally captures the spirit of what Jesus meant when he was asked "who is my mother and who are my brothers?" No matter who you are in this life, when you stand by me, oh, you are SO my brother or sister or mother! Wow, I love you guys! "For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother." Just keep on doing the loving! X

  • ytb

    Many wanted someone to stand by them. How many want God? Yet, God, is the eternal One who has been there all along when everyone else has left. Isn't it ironic that we never consider God only until something bad has happened or about to happen? Would it not be wonderful if we ask God to stand by us every single day?

  • Don

    I don't see any credits given to the people who flawlessly pieced these artists together as if they were all performing in the same place, at the same time. It was a masterful achievement. "The whole crew" who made this possible deserves our thanks.

  • Martin

    I echo the carefully expressed words of Susie Stone, or Diane Cobb, or Stephen, or Gary Levin, we've all captured the beauty and the passion of the music ... and we all have a friend or a family member or a stranger we know who needs us to stand by her, or by him or by them! And we all often need someone standing beside us ... many thanks to several wonderful friends who stand beside me! At a time when I'm worried and confused (for my country = Canada!) ... and among the musicians and singers featured, we know that so many of them are singing out of the ferment of worry and anxiety that is or has been clear on the streets of their cities, or countrysides ... Venezuela, South Africa, the United States ... etc., etc., etc., Tough times for so many people in so many countries ... including my own! ... Hey 18000 people just lost their jobs in my country ... that's going to be a lot of people who will need people to stand by them! (and, hey, another large employer seems ready to fill the vacuum ... very interesting!!!) ... Anyway, this is a beautiful video ... and this kind of music (in the street, in the country, etc ... spontaneous, but full of passionately true emotion ... does often bring us to tears ... of solace in the music. Many, many, many thanks for a great video!

  • Susie Stone

    I absolutely love this music, video, song, locations, EVERYTHING! Thank you so much for all the work you put into it! I had a friend that went through a tornado and this is what I think of when I hear these words.....we all need each other!

  • Diane Cobb

    I love the whole site, and people. It is full of love, passion and stands for what many of us want to see. World Peace. Music is a wonderful way to share with others from the heart and spreading the message of love. :)))

  • Stephen

    So many people from so many different walks of life playing the best version of this song I've ever heard. Individuals playing part in something bigger all for the love of music. Awesome.

  • Gary Levin

    How music connects different cultures with the emotional thread coursing through all of us.

  • Sombat Souphakhot

    Beautiful musicians.

  • Jeffrey

    The passion, the heart flet redition from all the musicians, standing by each other allowing us to witness beautiful harmony and shared purpose. Powerful indeed!

  • Chuck

    The video and the music are wonderful. I have watched this video for several years and I am amazed by the positive impact it has on me. Bless you all.

  • Marie

    The words and the music itself. No judgment, but pure support to be united in a positive way.

  • rosela

    i couldnt watch it the video didnt show up but it sounds amazing

  • Dr. Robb

    Whatever the difference between people is of no consequence. To the spirit, music is the same.

  • Caroline

    Have always love the rythmn and lyrics of this song...the fact that it is being played and sung, so well, by many, all in different parts of the globe at the same time is what moves me to tears...unity, oneness, joy ... YEA! THE WAY LIFE IS MEANT TO BE LIVED! It's on its way...

  • Jan

    Very clever approach to communicating that we are all one in spirit. Jan Eden

  • Esther

    nice music i like it and am inspired .thank you

  • Bill

    Awesome Mark! "If music be the food of love, play on."

  • Al

    Mr.Johnson, as i got ready to leave for my University position here in S.Korea, i checked my emails only to see my sister-in-law from Philly sent me your video.(My home is Long Beach,Ca.) My heart was full to overflowing with tears of joy!!! Thank you for your vision, fortitude and desire to make this world a better place.

  • Better world

    simple music, simply nice!

  • Jim

    So unique So moving So good

  • grace

    it was so fantastic,outstanding work well done, so inspiring. thank you for sharing that.

  • Dave

    I too was very moved by this wonderful rendition by so many fine musicians around the world.Thank you very much fo doing this !

  • Jim

    Mark Johnson hits a home run with this work that shows everyone five minutes of world harmony.

  • Paris Lopez

    Sheer JOY. My heart is experiencing love on a cellular level. Every part of me became enlightened to reach for my higher self. A sence of contribution emerges selflessly to be present for those around me. Thank you for the music and gratitude that emminates from the artists-musicians soul. Namaste Paris Lopez

  • Kathy

    Wonderful and uplifting. Makes our world affairs not seem so bleak.

  • rich

    This brought back many great memories of all the people family and friends I have loved and lost

  • Miriam birch

    It brought chills up my spine and tears to my eyes.

  • Vânia

    Maravilhoso! Wonderful! Lindo trabalho, é disso que o mundo precisa. Coisas tão belas assim

  • Vic

    What a wonderful video and a brilliant beautiful concept. There is peace in music and there is peace through music. Join together. Thank you.

  • Karen

    wow. I was sitting at my computer listening to this song/video and the next thing you know...I turned up the sound and started dancing around the room singing Stand By Me! What a beautiful tribute to great musicians! Keep it up!

  • Kym

    That was a beutiful song. We should have more like those. I used to love the song when I was much younger. Thanks for sharing.

  • Katheryn

    Thank you for your love and vision, and dedication to sharing it with others. I was moved to tears as the images and music moved through me.

  • Ashley

    Love how this unites every musician of those parts of the world no matter how far the are and you can feel that everything fits and it's perfect, I wished all the music was like that, trully beautiful and special I really love it and of course wish to hear more about it. Thanks for posting this great video and the links or maybe I would have never found it and for the great community here, and everywhere, but specially here.

  • Mike Murray

    The POWER of Music!! Awesome!!

  • Yuji

    I was rocking and nodding as I watched the video of what unites as human-spirtual beings...many, many thank yous!


    GREAT!! THANKS....



  • Lydia V.

    Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful song to help bring peace among us!!!

  • serge

    Il n'y a aucun adjectif assez puissant pour decrire comme c'est beau. vive la liberté.

  • Teresa

    This is what music should do: Connect us. Lovely song, lovely people.

  • dennis

    what a great and moving video

  • Clayton Landey

    wonderful. beautiful. thank you.

  • Rahul V. Chittella

    BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!:) No other word to describe this!!!:) SIMPLY BRILLIANT!!!!:)

  • Dave Corella

    Mark Johnson,as I sat at work and took a few moments to view this wonderful Video, I wanted you to know you have captured the Heart and Soul of Mankind. I had tears of joy and love running down my face as I watched these marvelous human beings sharing their precious talents worldwide. This demonstrates the Oneness we share, I was moved and grateful to everyone that partakes in this moment. Thank you so much

  • Rick

    Here I was, buzzing around this morning getting the kids off to school, when all of a sudden this email caught me out of the corner of my eye. I am subscribed to many news letters and site so have a tendency to by-pass so much great stuff as you just can't get to all of it. Like I said, this one for some reason, made me hit the "play" button. WHAT PURE JOY to refresh your morning. I can't tell you the lift it gave me watching these incredible musicians from around the world being "mixed" together. This needs to be done "way" more often!! I love how people like you "share" you talents and experiences to Bless others...that "Is" why we are here. YOU HAVE A GREAT DAY... When we share - that is poetry in the prose of life. --Sigmund Freud Blessings to you and what you a doing!

  • Page 1

  • Watch a Bill Moyers interview with Mark Johnson, where he describes the back story of his work.
  • Playing For Change is dedicated to bringing peace in the world, through the power of music.  Get involved!
  • Share this video with a friend who loves music!

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