Sunday, January 03, 2010
This cover of Stand By Me was recorded by completely unknown artists all around the world. It all started with a base track—vocals and guitar—recorded on the streets of Santa Monica, California, by a street musician called Roger Ridley. The base track was then taken to New Orleans, Louisiana, where Grandpa Elliott—a blind singer from the French Quarter—added vocals and harmonica while listening to Ridley's base track on headphones. In the same city, Washboard Chaz's added some metal percussion to it.
The producers took the resulting mix all through Europe, Africa, and South America, adding new tracks with multiple instruments and vocals that were assembled in the final version you are seeing in this video. I don't know about you, but it blew me away.
The video was among the first in a series of musical videos made by Playing for Change, a movement to promote international understanding through music (no endorsement intended).
(You may want to click on through to You Tube or Playing for Change and watch the High Quality version.)