Singer Honors Pandemic Workers on Incredible Road Trip


Singer and actor Harry Connick Jr. has spent a lot of his life on tour buses traveling from city to city. Even when the pandemic shut down the country, he couldn’t sit still.

With the help of his daughter, filmmaker Georgia Connick, and a bunch of GoPro cameras, he embarked on a road trip to meet essential workers around the country who were risking their lives during the pandemic.

“United We Sing: A Grammy Tribute to the Unsung Heroes,” a TV special that airs on CBS on Sunday at 8 p.m. ET, highlights the everyday heroes along his journey to New Orleans.

The show also features musical performances from Jamie Foxx, Cyndi Lauper, Dave Matthews, Tim McGraw and more.

“I just want to reach out and meet some of these folks, sanitation workers or elementary school teachers or people that are working at food banks,” said Harry Connick.

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“These are the people that are keeping the supply chain going and keeping our lives going.”

Over the course of about 12 days, Georgia Connick filmed her father as he learned about how the coronavirus was affecting workers in public transportation, grocery stores, health care and more.

“Watching these people do their everyday jobs, not necessarily thinking they’re heroes, but everyone else thinking they are heroes, is very incredible,” said Georgia Connick.

They started their trip at a hospital in the Queens borough of New York City, where Connick’s sister, an Army Reserve colonel and psychiatrist, helped with the Pentagon’s response to the pandemic.

Will you watch the TV special on Connick Jr.'s road trip?

“It was highly emotional,” said Harry Connick. “We wanted to do a show that was about celebration as opposed to constantly reminding people of how sad the situation is. And it is. But there’s a lot of silver linings.”

Upon reaching his hometown of New Orleans, Harry Connick walked through an empty Bourbon Street, the neon-lit entertainment hotspot normally filled with music, drinking and dancing that had gone quiet during the pandemic.

“The mayor was kind enough to let us film on Bourbon Street under very, very tight circumstances and conditions,” he said.

“We hope when people watch on Sunday night, they’ll kind of have a respite from the normal barrage of bad news.”

The special will raise funds for charities that support underserved children, including No Kid Hungry and the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music in New Orleans, as well as to the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund, a charitable organization of the Recording Academy.

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