From The Boston Globe
November 17, 2002
Slain Reporter Inspired Tribute
By Jenny Jiang, Globe Correspondent
Ali Sheps had never met Daniel Pearl, but her life,
she said, has been changed by his story.
Like millions of others, Sheps, a 26-year-old software
designer, first heard of the Wall Street Journal reporter
through news of his murder at the hands of terrorists
in Pakistan. However, it was the story of the 39-year-old
journalist's life - his passion for music and writing
and his pursuit of bridging people together - that
inspired the Arlington resident.
And so for the past nine months, Sheps, and volunteers
from Club Passim, a Cambridge-based nonprofit music
center, spent countless hours organizing last night's
benefit concert, ''Universal Language: A Musical Tribute
to Daniel Pearl'' that raised more than $18,000 for
a foundation created in Pearl's memory.
''I was just incredibly touched by his story, the
tragedy of what happened. I was reading about how gentle
he was as a person, and the juxtaposition between the
way he lived and died was so profound,'' said Sheps.
''I wanted to do something to celebrate his life.''
''Ten months ago, we thought of him as Mr. Pearl.
Then Daniel Pearl. Today, he is Danny,'' said Betsy
Siggins, executive director of Club Passim, who says
she has come to know Pearl the person through her involvement
in the project.
''The concert spoke clearly of the healing power of
music,'' Siggins said.
More than 400 attended the concert, at the Old South
Meeting House in Boston last night, which featured
an array of music, including classical, bluegrass,
and folk, that reflected Pearl's own diverse musical
interests, organizers said.
''We're remembering him in a language that he loved
and was very good at,'' said Christopher Lydon, the
former host of ''The Connection'' radio talk show,
who hosted the concert.
Todd Mack, Pearl's close friend and a former bandmate
in the folk-rock band, Cosmic Gypsies, found a cardboard
box from ''Pearl Arts and Craft'' while rehearsing
backstage and deemed it a sign of Pearl's presence.
''The ghost of Danny Pearl,'' Mack said, drawing laughter
from the audience. ''Danny is in the building.''
Mack and bandmate Dave Keehn, also known as Cosmic
Jack, was the opening act and played three songs, accompanied
by tapes of Pearl's fiddle and mandolin recordings.
''If Danny were here, he'd be making fun of us. It's
like karaoke,'' Mack said. ''We'll call it Danny-oke.''
The Daniel Pearl Foundation, formed a few weeks after
his death in February, works to promote justice and
cross-cultural understanding - just as Pearl has tried
to accomplish through his writing and music.
''We didn't want to have Danny's life end on a sad
note. We wanted to continue his legacy in a positive
way,'' Tamara Pearl, Daniel's sister, who is the vice
president of the foundation, told the Globe earlier
This story ran on page B6 of the Boston Globe on November