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Nonprofit Overview

Mission: The Jazz Bridge Project is a nonprofit organization that was established by a group of caring jazz musicians and fans dedicated to assisting professional Greater Philadelphia Metro area jazz and blues musicians and vocalists in times of crisis by providing confidential and caring support in keeping with their personal dignity. Through donations, grants, and our neighborhood concerts, Jazz Bridge assists those coping with emergencies involving health, legal, financial, personal and professional needs, while building an awareness of the local jazz sound.

Target demographics: All professional jazz and blues musicians in crisis in the Greater Philadelphia Metro area

Direct beneficiaries per year: About 60 crisis needs and over 130 musicians are employed in our neighborhood jazz/blues concerts

Geographic areas served: Philadelphia, Southern NJ, Wilmington, DE, and Trenton, NJ

Programs: Five Neighborhood Concerts Series from Oct-May Client Crisis Needs

Community Stories

12 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1 Dave82

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've have performed for and support the project.
The assistance the project provides for area musicians in need is incredible. Please support the Jazz Bridge Project!

2 Rhenda Fearrington

Board Member

Rating: 5

Moving an Artist from Illness to Wellness, is the role of a Savior! It's no wonder musicians have referred to Jazz Bridge as "Having an Angel on Speed Dial!" Jazz Bridge doesn't just satisfy the artist's needs through all of the obvious and not-so obvious ways of a non-profit; but with empathy, it provides a conduit to do what Art is supposed to do, every day...move the dial on Social Justice, Activism and CHANGE! That's POWERFUL! That's Jazz Bridge! I'm very grateful to serve on a Board with such passionate, caring people!

Previous Stories
1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

"You cannot travel within and stand still without," James Allen

Jazz Bridge and its' funding has provided Philadelphia Jazz & Blues artists sustenance for the Body, Peace of Mind, and very tangible relief that prevents the many challenges of life from breaking one's spirit. This allows the Artist to keep doing what they do best...Create!

They have provided lodging for artists and their families impacted by fire. They have provided medical care for artists' babies resulting from accidents. They have assisted families in laying to rest, beloved Artists. I am constantly impressed with their limitless support.

Review from Guidestar

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Passion, amazing music, community, and the heritage of jazz all define Jazz Bridge Project. It's mission to preserve and disseminate jazz and its rich and storied culture to everyone is truly important, and a gift to us all.

2 Jan K.

Donor

Rating: 5

Many people may look at an organization like this and say "Hey.. there are plenty of more pressing problems that deserve my money." Well sure, there is no shortage of causes that are worthy of our contributions.

But the old phrase "Charity begins at home" should not be lost. There is something very special and personal about contributing when the direct beneficiaries are those whose daily lives are intertwined with our own. Jazz and Blues musicians and vocalists (the professional ones) have devoted their lives to an art form which has declined precipitously in popularity over the decades. This creates not only a decrease in their revenue and ability to eke out a living, but also deprives them of the opportunity to share their gifts with those who still appreciate and love America's only native musical form.

Jazz Bridge not only provides a safety net for those who need assistance with the mundane aspects of daily life.. medical and dental care...replacement of lost or stolen instruments, and legal assistance. The local concerts they organize and present give these artists them opportunity to do what they have devoted their lives to mastering. In the Philadelphia / Delaware Valley, the dozens of venues that hired live musicians (especially Jazz and Blues artists) have closed in rapid succession, By holding various series of events at family-friendly venues and for modest fees, Jazz Bridge not only provides reasonably paid working opportunities to musicians, but offers opportunities for exposure to fans (and potential fans) of all ages.

It feels good to know you can help people across the globe whom you will never meet ... but if feel GREAT to help those who are your neighbors, and share in making our region a viable place for a deserving art form to thrive and continue.

Previous Stories
1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Jazz Bridge serves a very unique and under-publicized role in assisting artists in need. Jazz is America's greatest contribution to the arts, and unfortunately does not command the respect or financial support that is enjoyed by performers of European classical music.

As such, talented and dedicated performers, more often than not, choose to live at subsistence levels in order to pursue this art. Emotional rewards aside, remuneration for Jazz musicians rarely allows a lifestyle above minimal survival (rent, food and hopefully transportation.)

The slightest financial, health or legal problem can render the average jazz musician or vocalist homeless in very short order.

Jazz Bridge fulfills a role which no other organization does in recognizing this rare segment of our society, and coming to the aid of those in need in a very selfless manner.

Funds are not spent on fancy headquarters. Officers to not meet in the Caribbean. Donors know that when they support Jazz Bridge, their funds will go directly to help those artists who selflessly give us a great deal of joy, receiving little in return.

Jazz Bridge allows them a little bit more dignity in this life than they are used to (or expect.) They deserve all the support they can get.

Review from Guidestar

1 Bruce35

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

A bit over two years ago, I was in the midst of a personal, professional, health and financial crisis. It was as far down as one could get, and as falls go, it was pretty quick, as not long before, I had been a more-than-successful jazz drummer, recording artist, video producer with Warner Bros. , columnist with Scripps-Howard, and happy and secure in my personal life.

The beautiful folks at Jazz Bridge, notably Suzanne Cloud and Wendy Simon Sinkler found out about my situation. Ms. Cloud, who I had not seen in years, tracked me down. I was looking, feeling and playing lousy, without drums and without computer. At first, I didn't want the help of Jazz Bridge or anyone else. I think that's why it's called "foolish pride." I eventually broke down and accepted the assistance of Jazz Bridge. In short order. Jazz Bridge got me a computer, a set of drums, and because of their faith me me as a writer, installed me in the Jazz Bridge Public Relations chair. It took about a year, but my writing career resumed, I'm busier playing jazz now than I have been in 40 years, am handling public relations for a variety of clients, feel well, look well, etc.

Let me tell you how important Jazz Bridge is: If not for them, I wouldn't be here. Nor would lots of others. I vowed to them at the start, that I would be more than happy to tell my story--loudly, frequently and to anyone within earshot--about how essential and important Jazz Bridge is to our community.

It would be impossible for me to adequately express my gratitude for what they did for me. I can only hope that my love for all those in the organization comes through in my writing and above all, via my playing.

2 Brendan6

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I don't know of any other organization quite like Jazz Bridge. Their mission of helping musicians in need would be enough, but the concerts that they present also put musicians to work. It's rather extraordinary.

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Jazz Bridge is a highly professional organization which is very diligent in finding resources to help musicians handle all sorts of emergency or medical situations. I have seen them grow from a small organization to a highly regarded organization which serves musicians in the Delaware Valley area. Not only do they help musicians in emergencies, they now are helping them find gigs, advertising many gigs and actively fundraising to support their efforts.

Previous Stories
1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As Artistic Director of the Cape May Jazz Festival for 16 years I have watched Jazz Bridge grow from its beginning to a very viable and meanful organization helping musicians over the tri-state area. Economic conditions of most musicians in the US have always been a financial struggle. Jazz Bridge fills this gap by helping those in need in emergency situations. We have watched their support for musicians grow where they are now able to meet or help most emergency situations. Woody and I have great admiration for their efforts and have always done what we have been able to do to support their efforts. Cofounders Friends of Cape May Jazz, Inc.

Review from Guidestar

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am very impressed with the goals and accomplishments of Jazz Bridge. This organization works tirelessly and creatively to meet the needs of jazz musicians in crisis situations, and they deserve our continued support.

Jamey Nocks

Review from Guidestar

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

An organization that has the welfare of jazz artists in the community as their primary focus is a great asset. This is what the Jazz Bridge is about. It is concerned with artists dealing with emergency hardships as well as fostering an environment where the art of jazz can continue to flourish. It should be supported by the community at large because it strengthens and supports one of the essential ingredients in any healthy society and that is its artistic life and energy.

Review from Guidestar

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Jazz Bridge is one of the most dynamic and important advocates for the greater Philadelphia area jazz community and for those who enjoy listening to this most vulnerable of art forms. They are a vital link between members of the jazz community and all those that appreciate, are inspired by and want to support the music and the musicians that work so hard to keep it alive, fresh and exciting. The concerts that they offer to the various communities wherein they have established venues are highly valued – I’ve been to some in my own community at the Cheltenham Art Center – and I can tell you first-hand that the experience was warm, friendly, comfortable and at the same time very professional and first-rate! Of course, all of this enables them to help jazz musicians during times of crisis and need. I wish them continued success and growth for many years to come – Marc Adler

Review from Guidestar