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VOL. 128 | NO. 230 | Monday, November 25, 2013

Music Veterans Record Song to Benefit St. Jude

By Andy Meek

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The efforts of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital have been the focus of an outpouring of financial and charitable support in recent weeks, the latest example of which is a song by music industry veterans to raise money for the hospital.

A group of musicians gathered in September in Los Angeles to record a song, “If I Had The Time (I Could Change The World),” proceeds from which are going in part to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

(Photo courtesy of Rockers for St. Jude)

Dick Wagner – a guitarist and songwriter who has worked closely with Alice Cooper, Aerosmith and Lou Reed, among others – gathered more than 50 musicians in mid-September at Sunset Sound in Los Angeles to record “If I Had The Time (I Could Change The World).” The song is now available to download from iTunes, Amazon.com, cdbaby.com and other outlets, and 50 cents from every download will go to St. Jude.

Musicians participating in the recording included Danny Seraphine, a founder of the band Chicago; Mark Farner, a veteran of Grand Funk Raiload; Lee Sklar, who has played bass for James Taylor, Rod Stewart and Don Henley; and Jennifer Batten, who played guitar in Michael Jackson’s band.

Wagner wrote and produced the song. On a Facebook page that has been set up for the effort, “Rockers for St. Jude,” Wagner earlier this month penned a thank you note to participating musicians.

“We gather here to pay back a little of the good lives we’ve led, to help the dedicated miracle workers of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the sick and helpless children we did not become,” Wagner writes. “Each and every one of you is blessed with talent and the unquenchable thirst to give from the heart through music. As the producer of these sessions, I am extremely proud and thankful to all of you for giving as you do for this cause.”

That recording is one of several examples of groups and events focused on St. Jude that have been raising money for the hospital recently.

On Saturday, Nov. 23, for example, thousands of participants in 75 cities were scheduled to take part in the “St. Jude Give thanks. Walk.” – a 5K that has raised more than $11 million for the hospital.

Earlier this month, hundreds of professionals from every major Wall Street firm took part in the 24th annual Wall Street’s Taste of New York. That event on Nov. 12 raised almost $2 million for the hospital.

To date, the Taste of New York event – launched in 1989 – has raised more than $38 million for St. Jude. The money it has generated has benefited efforts at the hospital including the brain tumor program, pediatric HIV/AIDS research and the naming of the Infectious Disease Research Floor in the Chili’s Care Center.

At the end of October, several hundred people gathered in Dallas for the St. Jude Evening Under the Stars Party, a gala that, along with a golf event in Dallas, raised more than $903,500 for the hospital.

Holiday television spots drawing attention to St. Jude are airing on TV and online starting this month. Actors Jennifer Aniston, Robin Williams and Sofia Vergara are some of the celebrities lending their efforts to the holiday campaign.

Also throughout this month and in December, shoppers wherever the St. Jude logo is displayed can make a donation or purchase specialty items that benefit St. Jude.

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