derek mckeith

Derek McKeith, singer, guitarist and member of the Traveling Guitar Foundation

*(New York) – Music and Poetry team up as a force to encourage music education, songwriting, and spoken word for young people in schools and camps across the country. That is the goal of the new partnership between the Traveling Guitar Foundation (TGF) and People of Poetry Foundation (POP)

TGF founder Damon Marks is pleased to welcome POP founder Yashi Brown (granddaughter of Katherine Jackson, daughter of Michael Jackson’s sister Rebbie) as a member of the non-profit organization’s team which includes Executive Director Sandra Trim-DaCosta, Director of West Coast Programs, Soul/rocksta Derek McKeith and Director of Business Development Anre’  “NJ Rey’ DaCosta, as well as artists such as pop punk band Time Will Tell, rapper Hashim BING, pop singers Tiffany Araya and Melaner Quiroz.

These dedicated individuals contribute their expertise and talent to the foundation, which provides instruments and equipment to music students through its corporate sponsors/supporters including ESP Guitars, Mogami Cables, Line 6 Amps, Guitar Center, Marriot Hotels, Clear Channel and others.

The group presents a live performance assembly featuring music and poetry during each session. TGF also takes an extra step by keeping in touch with the schools and conducting clinics and workshops for students when necessary.

With Burbank School District’s huge success from last November already under their belt The Traveling Guitar Foundation and People Of Poetry will return to California   (February 5th thru 11th)  to visit and perform in five schools in the San Fernando Valley School District. The students will get to let loose and enjoy a live concert and faculty will see firsthand why music and creative literary expression is crucial to the overall development of our youth

Other partners and supporters of TGF include Dikembe Mutombo Foundation, Allan Houston Legacy Foundation, Alonzo Mourning Foundation, Nickelodeon, Alicia Keys, Swizz Beatz, Bret Michaels, Bon Jovi, Darryl ‘DMC’ McDaniels, Nick Cannon, Miranda Cosgtove, Ariana Grande, to name a few.

TGF is pleased to welcome Allen Steelgrave Director of Marketing/Artist Relations at ESP Guitars to their Board of Directors.

The latest additions to the TGF Advisory Board include David Bryan, Bon Jovi co-founder/keyboardist; Jim Urie, President/CEO Universal Music Group Distribution; Trevor Gale, Sr. V.P, Writer/Publisher Relations, SESAC; Anthony Ellis, V.P. Urban, SONY/BMG Distribution; music industry veteran/attorney Vernon Slaughter and EURweb’s Lee Bailey.

damon marks

Damon Marks, founder of the Traveling Guitar Foundation (TGF)

About The Traveling Guitar Foundation
The Traveling Guitar Foundation’s mission is to provide assistance and support to instrumental music programs in our communities’ schools, helping to ensure that elementary, middle and high school students have access to music education and musical instrument instruction throughout their educational journey.  We accomplish our mission in two ways:  first, we travel to a school whose music program is in need and put on a music educational clinic, working directly with the children by providing musical instruction, performance, and discussion on a wide variety of topics related to music, instruments, and music education.  Secondly, we donate guitar kits and other instruments directly to the schools to supplement their music programs, helping to alleviate the financial burdens and budgetary constraints that prevent schools from maintaining sustainable musical education programs.  Our goal is to inspire and educate children through music by ensuring that these music programs are always available to them.

The Traveling Guitar Foundation (TGF) is focused on shaping the future of the music industry through children’s education.

Guitarist and songwriter Damon Marks has performed and recorded with many top names in the music business. He brings the same passion and energy he displays on-stage and in the studio to his charitable work.

In 2009, Marks established the Traveling Guitar Foundation.

yashi brown

Yashi Brown, founder of People of Poetry (POP)

About People of Poetry Foundation (POP)
People of Poetry Foundation (POP) is a New Jersey Non-profit dedicated to spreading the literary art of poetry and spoken word through our live performances and workshop programs to our youths in public and private schools, those in mental healthlocked facilities, rehab facilities, group homes and support groups.

Through our partnerships with Traveling Guitar Foundation(TGF) in their dedication to keep music education in schools around the country, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and its 1500 affiliates nationwide including Puerto Rico and Canada, and Project Return Peer Support Network (PRPSN) and its 120 support groups in Los Angeles County, POP is able to maintain its vision in showcasing how poetry is not only at the very heart of all creative expression and therefore crucial in its modern exposure to our youths but alsoan effective tool in coping with various emotional and mental health challenges.

Its founder, Yashi Brown, is an author in her own right with newly released book of poetry, “Black Daisy in a White Limousine”, as well as public speaker and an official national advocate for NAMI, the most formidable grassroots organization and preeminent voice on Capitol Hill for mental health. Amongst her other accomplishments she has also brought on board “Poetri” a Tony Award winning poet and co-founder of the largest spoken word venue in the country “Da Poetry Lounge” in helping to advance POP’s mission in spreading this amazing and sometimes under appreciated art form.



Monday – February 6th, 2012
Apperson Street Elementary
10233 Woodward Avenue
Sunland, CA 91040
1 pm


Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 (TBD)


Wednesday – February 8th, 2012
Pacoima Middle School
9919 Laurel Canyon Blvd.
Pacoima, CA 91331
1:15 p.m.


Thursday – February 9th, 2012
Delphi Academy (K – 12)
11341 Brainard Avenue
Lakeview Terrace, CA 91342
1 pm


Friday – February 10th, 2012
Verdugo High School
10625 Plainview Avenue
Tujunga, California 91042
11:50 am  -12:30 pm


Friday- February 10th 2012
Mount Gleason Middle School
10965 Mount Gleason Avenue
Sunland, CA 91040
2 p.m.