(Video link here.)  In 2005, Mark Johnson was walking in Santa Monica, California, when he heard Roger Ridley singing “Stand By Me” with stunning soul and conviction. Mark asked, “With a voice like yours, why are you singing on the streets?” 

Roger replied, “Man I’m in the Joy business, I come out to be with the people.” 

Mark returned with a recording equipment and cameras to record Roger for Playing for Change, a movement he started with Whitney Kroenke to record “the inspiration and heartbeat of the people”, through music.

It was the start of this surprising, crazy-beautiful rendition of Ben E. King’s 1960’s classic Stand By Me performed across many countries and cultures: a quick world tour of joy…

(We want to be in th JOY BUSINESS!!!!)


With thanks to Chris Eldredge for sending it our way!


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5 replies on “Playing for Change’s Glorious, Global “Stand by Me”

  1. Thank you, thank you, thank you – and Chris Eldredge too! What a way to start the day.

  2. This is wonderful. I wanted it to go on and on. Thanks for kicking off my week this way!

  3. So glad you like it. I listened to it over and over last night…and then again this morning. It really set up the day.

  4. I just came on this again while reading the post on Deborah Domanski. IT IS STILL GREAT and just what I needed to get myself out of a funk this morning. Thank you all over again.

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