Watch: TOM MORELLO Performs At WAYNE KRAMER's 75th-Birthday Party

May 1, 2023

Tom Morello joined MC5 guitar legend Wayne Kramer on stage to celebrate Kramer's 75th birthday Saturday night (April 29) at a rockin' benefit concert for Jail Guitar Doors, the social justice arts nonprofit Kramer founded with his wife, Margaret Saadi Kramer, and fellow activist and troubadour Billy Bragg.

The event took place at Jail Guitar Doors' C.A.P.O. Center, a newly launched community arts center in Los Angeles's Fairfax District. They also celebrated with an open house there earlier in the day where community members took part in family-friendly activities including graffiti art and breakdancing workshops from hip-hop charity No Easy Props as well as tours of the in-house music studio.

The night featured an array of performances from Jail Guitar Doors teachers and music students including JASON HEATH & THE GREEDY SOULS and LAENA featuring Cole Berliner as well as a thrilling rock set by Raul Pacheco from OZOMATLI, who was joined by a full band as Kramer looked on smiling from ear to ear.

RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE's Morello capped off the night by performing a rousing cover of Bruce Springsteen's song "The Ghost of Tom Joad" to a sold-out crowd and joined Kramer for an incredible finale on "Kick Out The Jams", the title track from MC5's 1969 album that helped make the pioneering Detroit rockers famous.

At the end of the night, Kramer was presented with a birthday cake resembling the red, white and blue Stars and Stripes Stratocaster he usually plays as the entire room sang "Happy Birthday".

Founded in 2008, Jail Guitar Doors USA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that works toward a more fair and just America. It provides musical instruments and mentorship to help rehabilitate individuals experiencing incarceration through the transformative power of music and provides music and arts programming for underserved and system-impacted youth to disrupt systemic root causes of inequality.

Photo credit: Alxis Ratkevich

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