I've long been a fan of benefit albums because they introduce me to music I wouldn't hear otherwise. This CD combined enough performers that I am familiar with (Eddie Vedder, Wilco, James Mercer, Ryan Adams) to make me confident that it would be worth a listen. It was and, yes, I would recommend this album to a friend.
This is an eclectic compilation and several songs migrated to one playlist or another. The compilation combines street and professional musicians. Each CD has songs that stand out. On Disc One, The Helio Sequence performs Heart Disease, a song that reminds me of some of The Verve's Urban Hymns album and some of the other stuff coming out of the UK in the late 1990s. James Mercer of The Shins and Broken Bells offers Caring is Creepy, which is a simple blend of guitar, harmonica, and vocals. Disc Two introduced me to a couple of groups I did not know prior to listening. Spend My Money by The Ettes and Prone by Station Zero are great and I'll be on the lookout for more music by each. Disc Three offers Call on Me by Pete Miser, my favourite of the hip-hop tracks in the compilation. That the country-tinged duet Two Tavern Town by John Doe and Carlos Guitarlos opens this disc demonstrates the eclectic nature of the compilation. Despite Disc One's Heart Disease being my favourite track of the compilation, my favourite of the discs overall is #2. Several of the tracks surprised me.
The collection has another dimension that I would be remiss not to share. The benefit to this "benefit concept CD" is Outside In. Outside In is a service in Portland, OR whose mission "is to help homeless youth and other marginalized people move towards improved health and self-sufficiency."