David Benoit, jazz artists gather to ‘Heal Our Land’

Ira Agting
International jazz musicians and OPM acts gather in a benefit concert for Yolanda (Haiyan) survivors

DAVID BENOIT. The world-class artists join forces in a night of solidarity and jazz. Photo courtesy of All That Jazz Productions

MANILA, Philippines – World renowned pianist David Benoit, along with several international jazz artists, conquers the Mall of Asia Arena on January 31, in a night of soothing rhythms for the benefit of typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) survivors.

The “Heal Our Land” concert promises over 3 hours of Benoit’s word-class brand of jazz, with performances by Grammy winner and former Ambrosia frontman David Pack, jazz singer Kevyn Lettau, and worship singer Jonathan Butler, whose ’90s single inspired the concert’s title.

The night of jazz wouldn’t be complete without the intoxicating sound of the saxophone, merged with classical guitar, piano and percussion. Saxophonists Jessy J and Filipino-American Michael Paulo are part of the production, alongside keyboardist Brian Simpson, pianists Spencer Day and Gregg Karukas, guitarist Ray Parker Jr., and percussionist Richie “Gajate” Garcia.

Also performing are Freddie Schreuders, Eric Valentine, and Nate Phillips of the LA All-Star Band.

The concert, directed by the Philippines’ own Bert de Leon, also features local talents Billy Crawford, Sitti, Side A, South Border, Freestyle, Mulatto, Zoo, True Faith, Chad Borja, and Thor Dulay from The Voice of the Philippines. 

Artists have waived their talent fees and all proceeds will be forwarded to ABS-CBN Sagip Kapamilya and Gawad Kalinga.

Listen to Jonathan Butler’s ‘Heal Our Land’ here:

Varying genres

Despite the concert being dominated by popular jazz acts, the night may be enjoyed by all demographics, said organizers from All That Jazz Productions.

Featured artists are said to have collectively sold over 200 million albums worldwide, with tracks that showcase mild rock, R&B, bossa nova, pop, and OPM sounds.

According to organizers, several performances will be a first in the Philippine concert scene, such as Benoit’s “Key to You” number with original singer Pack. The former Ambrosia frontman will also perform hits “Biggest Part Of Me”, “That Girl is Gone”, “You’re The Only Woman.”

Concert goers will also have the pleasure of hearing Kevyn Lettau sing “Sunlight” and “Bridges” live.

The musical production also serves as Philippine debut performances of artists Jonathan Butler, Spencer Day, Ray Parker Jr., Jessy J, and Brian Simpson.

Listen to ‘Key to You’ here:

Collective effort

“Heal Our Land” was organized out of the artists’ concern for the Filipinos affected by Super Typhoon Yolanda, which struck the Visayas early November.

As news of the destruction headlined all over the globe, Benoit reached out to concert producers in the Philippines, saying he wanted to perform for the victims. 

David Pack, who was coincidentally slated to hold his “Biggest Part of Me” concert in Manila on January 31, also wished to participate in relief efforts. With many other artists joining in, what was originally Pack’s one-man show, was converted into an all-star benefit.

Organizers highlight that “Heal Our Land” is not merely about raising funds for typhoon victims. The collective effort aims to showcase the goodness of the human spirit.

Watch the concert teaser here:

 – Rappler.com

Tickets start at P640 and are available through SM Tickets.

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