Top jazz talent to headline Buddhist Global Relief benefit concert

Esperanza Spalding

Esperanza Spalding

Buddhist Global Relief has signed on top-level jazz talent to headline its Concert to Feed the Hungry April 25 in New York City. Triple Grammy-winning bassist and vocalist Esperanza Spalding and her long-time collaborator, pianist Leonardo Genovese, will take the top slot, sharing the bill with pianist Kenny Werner’s acclaimed quartet. Spalding brings an activist background, having lobbied for the closing of the Guantanamo Bay prison camp, alongside Herbie Hancock and Harry Belafonte.

Werner’s 2010 album-length composition No Beginning No End arose from a Buddhism-inflected poem he wrote after his daughter’s tragic death at 16. “By reconnecting with the elements of Eastern spirituality that had long guided their thinking,” wrote Giovanni Russonello in Capital Bop, “the Werners eventually began to climb out of their despair together.”

“Few albums,” declared John Kelman in All About Jazz, “have ever so clearly demonstrated the healing power of music.”

All proceeds from Concert to Feed the Hungry will support Buddhist Global Relief’s hunger-elimination projects. A special website for the concert has been set up here, and you may learn more about Buddhist Global Relief’s programs here.