By DONNA BALANCIA
Wayne Kramer with headlining guests including Moby and Benmont Tench will hit the stage at The Ford Theatres on Sept. 28 to mark the 10th Anniversary of his charity, Jail Guitar Doors USA.
Jail Guitar Doors has been bringing instruments and songwriting and music programs into prisons, jails and youth correctional facilities.
For five of these years, Jail Guitar Doors has held its annual fundraising concert at the historic Ford Theatres and it’s expected to be yet another great show in support of the tireless organization.
Rock Out! 5 is a night that celebrates the work of a slew of people who help out Kramer and, his wife Margaret, unsung hero Kat Kambes, Jason Heath, Jill Sobule as well as other participants and volunteers in the program.
It takes a certain kind of dedication to go into the jails. But the inmates look forward to the visits and everyone gets a lot out of it.
“I’ve seen kids turn their lives around and now they’re working for organizations like ours,” said Heath, who works with Jail Guitar Doors and has a band called Jason Heath and The Greedy Souls. “We’re working towards that. All we’re trying to do ultimately is give the people a different idea of what they can do. We’re giving them something they can do that is positive that won’t bring them to jail. If we can do that 1-degree change over time that can be 45 degrees. I’ve seen it.”
Over the last years of Rock Out! concerts, there have been plenty of friends, including Phil and Dave Alvin, Sobule, Jackson Browne and Tom Morello.
This year’s concert features a rare headlining performance by Moby and his band, including special guest Benmont Tench, known for his work with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Jack Bowers and the Soledad Jazz Workshop featuring jazz legend Phil Ranelin (The Tribe) will bring a jazz flavor to the evening, and former Los Angeles poet laureate Luis J. Rodriguez will open the show with a special message.