No musician should struggle with hunger or homelessness

Clubs are closing, gigs are paying less and less, and changes in technology are making life harder for career artists.

When age, illness, or disaster threatens a long career, many have nowhere to turn. These musicians have been saving us with their music our entire lives. These are dignified people who never think to ask for help. Our lifesaving programs turn despair in to hope.

Musicians who have made a living playing blues, jazz, and roots music know they can call our office at any time or walk through our doors for help in solving an emergency. We average 30 individual musician emergency cases a day and approximately 9,000 assists every year. We prevent homelessness with housing assistance, keep artists healthy with pro bono medical care and provide financial support that keeps the lights on and food on the table.

Housing & Emergency Assistance

Preventing homelessness and evictions for musicians in need and assisting with rent, mortgages, transportation, utilities and other essential living expenses.

Pro Bono Medical

Providing a pro bono network of physicians and specialists for uninsured musicians in crisis.

Disaster Relief

Helping musicians rebuild their homes and restore their lives after hurricanes, floods, and other catastrophes.



cases internationally


raised for musicians in crisis


in pro-bono medical & legal assistance


JFA keeps its work with musicians completely confidential, and we
never say the names of anyone we assist unless they say it out loud
We thank these musicians for sharing their stories, which have in turn
made others feel more comfortable asking for help.

“After my operations I was confined to bed for seven years. Because of the Jazz Foundation and my friends I didn’t have to live in a facility.  I could remain in my home with my wonderful wife Gwen and still teach my students who ended up making the documentary Keep On Keepin’ On. God Bless the Jazz Foundation, they are our Angels on Earth.”

Clark Terry

“The Jazz Foundation is not just about money, it’s about love and being there for people who are forced to fly without a net.”

Al Jarreau

“I thank you from the basement of my heart to the balcony of my mind. You are so beautiful to me.”

Merry Clayton

“They were here for me when I needed them. They even took care of my dog when I went to the hospital. That’s love.”

Abbey Lincoln

“The Jazz Foundation makes you feel unconditionally loved, they are the real deal.”

Roberta Flack

“There are no words for the Love and the help you gave when I was diagnosed with the Cancer. You’re in my heart forever.”

Cynthia Robinson (Sly & the Family Stone)

“I lost my home to fire and had nowhere to go. The Jazz Foundation got me a new apartment, some great gigs, and gave me a new start.”


“I was going blind and couldn’t see to shop or cook. I was living on two cans of SlimFast a day for over a year and a half. The Jazz Foundation saved my life”


“When I had congestive heart failure and couldn’t work, the Jazz Foundation paid my mortgage for several months and saved my home.”


Support the Musicians’
Emergency Fund

Your donations help us reach more musicians and their families in times of crisis.


Are you a musician in crisis?

Call us today to get in touch with a licensed social worker.