Photograph courtesy of Mark Henderson

Songwriter Mark Henderson is among the Brown County musicians who have united to fight poverty in their community. Proceeds from their new CD "It's Not Just a Dream" will benefit a local food pantry/community kitchen.

A group of Brown County musicians are reaching out to their neighbors who struggle each day to put food on their tables.

The artists call themselves Brown County Musicians United to End Poverty. Their mission is "to gather musicians and other individuals interested in working together for the common cause of ending poverty in Brown County. ... Our ultimate goal is to help our impoverished neighbors unloose the shackles of poverty and experience hope."

Proceeds from the sale of their new, all-original-music CD It’s Not Just a Dream -- and from the release concert in Nashville the first weekend in October -- will benefit Mother's Cupboard Community Kitchen in Brown County (not to be confused with Mother Hubbard's Cupboard, the Bloomington food pantry).

Mother's Cupboard is one of only a few organizations in Brown County that help citizens with groceries and hot meals. It is unique in that it serves the population every day of the week -- and with no questions asked. It is located at 5306 State Road 135 North.

It's Not Just a Dream
- CD release party and free benefit concert
- Oct. 4 at noon
- Nashville Christian Church, 160 S. Van Buren St.

"Because we don't require those we serve to fill out forms, we are not eligible for any kind of federal funding," Mother Cupboard board member Don Schmidt says on the musicians' Web site.

Rick Clayton, a musician with a passion for folk, blues and spirituals, says, "Hunger is often a hidden tragedy, and a need that seems to be on the rise in Brown County. Mother's Cupboard clientele has increased about 50 percent just in the last year."

Other singer-songwriters on the album include Gordon Bonham and Jim Richter, Frank Jones, Kara Barnard, Lou Stant and The Mizfits, John Whitcomb, Mark Henderson and Amanda Smith.

"When John Whitcomb first told me of this project, I immediately wanted to contribute some music to the cause," says Henderson, an award-winning composer for theater and television/radio commercials (he's also worked in film). "Being fairly new to the area -- I'm from Santa Barbara -- I liked the idea of meeting and working with other artists in the community. The CD is for a very good cause, helping Mother's Cupboard, and helping raise funds to supply food for those who may be going through a rough patch.

"I'm pleased to share my composition 'Come To The Water,'" Henderson said. "I hope that it touches people."

Melissa McReynolds can be reached at .

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For more information
Brown County Musicians United to End Poverty