Music and Charity: The Light of Day Winterfest 2016 festival

LOD '16 Finale Photo courtesy of the writer

The Light of Day Foundation recently wrapped up its 16th annual season of music events with its Winterfest 2016 festival in Asbury Park, NJ. The New Jersey non-profit organization’s mission is to raise money and awareness and help find a cure for Parkinson’s disease and its related illnesses ALS and PSP through the power of music. The event is unique among music festivals in that it is charity-based: artists are donating their time for the cause. Since its inception in 2000, the event has grown from one small concert in New Jersey to over 80 events in 14 countries on three continents- Canada and Europe in November/December, New Jersey/New York and Philadelphia in January, and Australia in July. Artists who have performed include Bruce Springsteen, Jesse Malin, John Rzeznik (Goo Goo Dolls), Ed Kowalczyk (Live), Alejandro Escovedo, Darlene Love, Steve Forbert, Suzanne Vega and a multitude of unsigned and indie artists.

Music has often been a catalyst and lightning rod for social change. A common phrase among fans in the 1960’s Greenwich Village folk scene when discussing an artists’ performance was ‘what did they have to say.” American Songwriter spoke with several artists about Light of Day and playing music for a cause. Joe D’Urso, a New Jersey-based artist who founded Light of Day and has released 13 indie records; Willie Nile, a critically-acclaimed NYC artist who has been releasing records since 1980 and cited by Lucinda Williams, U2’s Bono, and Jakob Dylan for his insightful lyrics and passionate performances; Richard Barone,... Sign In to Keep Reading

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