Rock On, Rockstars: Musicians Playing a Philanthropic Tune

- Mel Kaspin Blume



…is pretty magical.  It can start a revolution (thank you, Beatles), it can raise awareness for issues like AIDS and homelessness (thank you, Jonathan Larson of Rent), it can make you feel love -- even if you’ve never felt it before (thank you, Ed Sheeran). It’s no surprise that we, as fans, develop a one-way loyal friendship with artists who touch our deepest emotions with their music.

The singers and songwriters that are able to reach us this deeply instill tremendous passion into each word, note and melody. And this passion, this award-winning passion (for many of the artists following), explodes out of the musical realm, and into the world-changing sphere. Since the Grammy Awards are around the corner, we thought it was just the right time to invite a very special (major understatement) group of musicians to take center stage.

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…first global changemaker and musical legend needs no introduction: Sir Elton John. Known as “the most generous person in music,” Elton John uses his influence to make a change in seemingly endless arenas, including a space that is close to his heart.  After losing many friends to HIV/AIDS, he established the Elton John AIDS Foundation. Each year, he hosts the White Tie and Tiara fundraising ball at his home, along with his renowned post-Grammy and -Oscar parties that also support his foundation.



…musical icon and distinguished activist, was granted the British Red Cross’ Services to Humanity Award in 2008, and wholeheartedly supports the efforts to help the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Africa. Ms. Lennox released a single titled Sing, which featured a celebrity-filled choir including Madonna, Faith Hill and Pink, that raised funds for Treatment Action Campaign, an organization dedicated to helping Africa fight the fatal virus.

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…may have heard of this next musical genius: The beloved Sting. Along with supporting a remarkable number of charities, he and his wife co-founded The Rainforest Foundation to aid rainforests in South America. Sting also headlined many charitable benefit concerts, including the 6-week world Human Rights Now tour.



…star Miranda Lambert and her mom founded MuttNation Foundation, an organization that voices the importance of adopting rescue pets and finding them “forever homes.” They teamed up with PetFirst, a national pet insurance company, to provide families with a further incentive to give rescues a chance.

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…three nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize under his belt, the ever-inspiring Bono dedicates his time to cause after cause including poverty, racism and AIDS. As a leader in the fight for global change, he helped create organizations including DATA (Debt AIDS Trade Africa) which found him a spot on Forbes’ Generous Celebrity List. Did we mention he was also knighted?



…of being knighted, Sir Paul McCartney leveraged his musical prowess and power to raise a TON of money for various charities throughout the decades. He hosted PETA’s Party of the Century gala, and organized and performed at numerous benefit concerts around the world including Live 8 and the Concert for New York City. Plus, following a private performance where he received one million dollars, he donated the full amount to a charity. “No matter how rough it gets, there’s always light somewhere.” Thanks for the beautiful reminder, Sir Paul.

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And, the award goes to…these philanthropic hearts.

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