Over 75 artists—Chicago natives and stars who got their start in the Windy City—have joined forces for a new music video to raise money for the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund, helping the many Chicago-area artists struggling in the wake of COVID-19 closures. Watch these talents perform the blues anthem “Sweet Home Chicago” in the video above.
Participants include Tony winners André De Shields, Jessie Mueller, and Joe Mantegna plus Edson Barbosa, Bril Barrett, Rachel Barton Pine, Rick Bayless, Jim Belushi, Melanie Brezill, Time Brickey, Tristan Bruns, E. Faye Butler, Dara Cameron, Matt Cashdollar, Thomas Cavender, David Chiriboga, Shantel Cribbs, Sandra Delgado, Star Dixon, Michael A. Downs, Kurt Elling, Annie Ermel, Aubriel Fields, Felicia P. Fields, Annie Jo Fischer, Joshua Funk, Cindy Gold, Lecy Goranson, Monique Haley, Brad Hall, Charlie Hall, Henry Hall, Anne Harris, Bernard Johnson, Mark Kelly, Heidi Kettenring, Keegan-Michael Key, Nicole Kyoung-Mi Lambert, Ramsey Lewis, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Nikki Lynette, Courtney Mack, Mallory Maedke, Ezra Mahler, Michael Mahler, Megon McDonough, Dan McGuinness, Anthony Mosely, Jesse Nolan, Jeff Perry, Jim Peterik, Jessica Redish, Rhymefest, Maisie Rose, Alan Ruck, Larkin Ruck, Julia Rust, Amaris Sanchez, Martin Saunders, Colten Settle, KJ Sheldon, Christine Sherill, Raymond Smith, Paul Oakley Stovall, John Toney, Cyrus Tong, Jessica Tong, Twista, Trey Vavra, Sam Wagster, Michael Weber, George Wendt, Jayden Wilson, Bobbi Wilsyn, Ellen Winters, Elise Wolf, and Jeff Wolfe.
“I am incredibly grateful to the many artists, performers, and residents who lent their Chicago and Chicago-inspired voices to this absolutely heartwarming production of our hometown anthem and very worthy cause,” said Chicago Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot in a statement. “If COVID-19 has shown us anything, it’s the nourishment and joy the arts brings to our lives; however, our artists have also been among most impacted by the fallout from this disease. Since its inception, the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund has served as a critical resource to help our arts community stay afloat during this crisis and—most importantly—allowed them to continue to do what they do best, which is create. I have no doubt that this wonderful video will inspire more lovers of Chicago culture to step up, chip in and help keep our arts community alive and well throughout this unprecedented event.”
The video was created by producer Jason Brett, producer Scott Silberstein, producer and video editor Matt Hoffman, producer Mark Larson, musical director and arranger Jesse Nolan, and audio mixer Andrew Twiss with Frayne Lewis and Kerry Sheehan, consultants for the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.
Viewers are encouraged to donate to the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund.