“Stand and Be Proud”

“Stand and Be Proud”

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Story Behind the Song

David Cassidy
“Stand and Be Proud”

Written by David Cassidy and Sue Shifrin-Cassidy
Recorded by The Voice of the City choir accompanied by the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra for Rebuild LA

My wife, Sue, and I were working at the time with our friend Bob Ezrin, the renowned music producer of such artists as Pink Floyd, Alice Cooper, Kiss. He had gone through enormous changes in his life, as had we. He had helped to change the lives of many people in need.

When the riots broke out in Los Angeles in 1992, I had just come off tour. “Lyin’ To Myself” was in the Top 20 and I was writing and recording my next album. “Stand and Be Proud” was in its infancy. Musically it was finished, but it hadn’t been developed enough lyrically.

Bob Ezrin immediately went to the First AME Church in south central Los Angeles, in the heart of where the riots were taking place, and began helping individuals and families who had lost their businesses and homes. Amongst other things, he was directing food drives there.

Some time in the next day, Bob called us and said that we needed to do something more to help. Sue and I immediately joined him at the church. The moment that we arrived, the faces of the people and the destruction of the structures and people’s lifelong possessions spawned the idea that we could make a significant contribution to help to pull the community together. The lyrics evolved from that tragedy.

Bob was mostly responsible for coordinating a much greater effort, producing an event which ultimately was filmed and recorded via generous donations from individuals and companies like John Paul DeJoria of Paul Mitchell, Jerry Moss and Herb Alpert, who gave us their studio and studio time at A&M, and lots of others. Propaganda Films donated the film crew and the helicopter, Scotti Bros. released the record.

After the event and recording were completed, the song and video were played in their entirety simultaneously on Good Morning America and on 5,000 radio stations! This created a great deal of awareness and stimulated donations. All of our writers and publishing royalties were donated to Rebuild LA, of which I’m very proud. I’m simply blown away by people’s generosity.

The event took place at the Hollywood Bowl, which contributed the venue and their outstanding Hollywood Bowl orchestra, who participated along with various choirs and church groups of every ethnic background, representing the melting pot of those affected and who make up L.A. Many celebrities wanted to be involved but we chose to have the people from the affected area join us and make them the stars. We called them “The Voice of the City.” Busses to bring the 1,000 chorus members to the Bowl were donated by the city. The Mayor of Los Angeles at the time, Tom Bradley, along with Peter Ueberroth, who headed the Rebuild LA project, was there to acknowledge our efforts, which we greatly appreciated. I was not in the video nor did I do any media about it as I didn’t want anyone to misconstrue the effort as self-promotion. I was just pleased that we could help.

“Stand and Be Proud”

This is our chance

Now we gotta take it

We may never get to pass this way again.

We gotta be strong

If we’re gonna make it,

Now it’s time to dry the tears.

Through the ashes hope appears

And if we reach out for the sky

We might touch the stars.

Stand and be proud

Of who we are,

We’ve come so close

We’ve come so far.

Now and forever

Our light will shine,

Shout it out loud

Stand and be proud.

We have a dream

Now we gotta live it.

It’s gonna take some work to make this dream come true

But this is our time.

We can’t waste this moment,

We’re doin’ it with love

And with help from God above

Nothing in this world can take it away.

Stand and be proud

Of who we are,

We’ve come so close

We’ve come so far.

Now and forever

Our light will shine,

Shout it out loud

Stand and be proud.

Close your eyes and feel the pride inside your heart

However long the road of life may be

This is the very best of you and me!

Stand and be proud

Of who we are,

We’ve come so close

We’ve come so far.

Now and forever

Our light will shine.

Shout it out loud

Stand and be proud.

Lyrics and Music by Sue Shifrin and David Cassidy. © 1992 BeauCoo Music

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