Singer-songwriter Josh Ritter will perform a a solo acoustic set this Sunday during a WXPN Musicians On Call benefit concert. The 7th annual benefit, hosted by WXPN’s mid-day host Helen Leicht, will feature an in-the-round performance with local openers Lizanne Knott, Suzie Brown, Scot Sax and Kuf Knotz.
WXPN Musicians On Call is a non-profit initiative that brings musicians to local hospitals to perform at patients’ bedsides. Since 2004, the program has touched the lives of more than 30,000 patients and their families in healthcare facilities throughout the Philadelphia region. The program includes 135 volunteer musicians and 38 volunteer guides who have regularly participated in the program by providing weekly performances for patients at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, the Hospital Of The University Of Pennsylvania, Our Lady Of Lourdes Medical Center, and the Philadelphia VA Medical Center. In addition to live music, the program also provides local hospitals with CD Pharmacies featuring a CD listening library and CD players for patients’ use. This past January, St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children was added to the participating hospitals, bringing the total to six.
In addition to bedside visits, another element of the Musicians On Call program is an initiative called Project Playback. Local musician Scot Sax—who will perform on Sunday night—has been working with a group of long-term residents at the Philadelphia Veterans Medical Center to write and produce a song that will be recorded for a CD. WXPN’s Helen Leicht, who has attended some of these sessions says “What Scot is doing is very moving and emotional to watch. He’s working with folks who have dedicated their lives to our country and are missing limbs, vision, and in many cases their ability to communicate and mentally function. But when Scot starts a song, you see these patients start to react and move to the music. You can really see and feel the emotional connection and impact of how music can touch people through Project Playback.”
Click to watch the video of Amos Lee, Mutlu, and Adrian Reju talking about the Musicians On Call program
The 7th Annual Musicians On Call Benefit Concert featuring Josh Ritter, Lizanne Knott, Suzie Brown, Scot Sax, and Kuf Knotz begins at 7:30 p.m. at World Cafe Live; tickets to the all-ages show are $25. Proceeds benefit WXPN Musicians On Call.