Chances are, you’ve watched at least one stunning musical montage produced by the Playing For Change organization.

But have you heard the story behind the story? Bill Moyers, intelligent as always, interviews the project founder Mark Johnson, on the aim and the inspiration behind the journey.

An excerpt:

The idea came about ten years ago, here in New York City. I was in a subway station on my way to work. You know, every day in the subway, people are just running around like crazy to get wherever they have to go.

But this particular day, I was in the subway and I heard these two monks playing music. And they were painted head to toe, all in white, wearing robes. And one of them was playing a nylon guitar and the other one was singing in a language that I didn’t understand and I imagine most people didn’t understand.

You know, there were about 200 people just stopped. Didn’t get on the train and started watching this music. And I looked around and I saw people with tears in their eyes. And I saw jaws dropping. And I just saw this collection.

And it occurred to me that here is a group of people that would normally run by each other. And here they are, collectively coming together. And it’s the music that brought them together.

So it really inspired me. And it occurred to me that when there’s no separation between music and people, when music is just happening and people can walk by and it can affect them, that this is an opportunity for us to really find a way to bring people together.

What do you think of the Playing for Change project? And is it possible to watch any of the clips without getting misty eyed?