Neal Casal Benefit Album & Documentary Film In Production
The songs of the late Neal Casal will be featured in an upcoming benefit album, Highway Butterfly: The Songs Of Neal Casal, which will support MusiCares, Backline.Care and the newly formed Neal Casal Music Foundation. A documentary film about Casal, who died by suicide last year at the age of 50, was also confirmed.
Longtime collaborators Jim Scott and Widespread Panic/Hard Working Americans bassist Dave Schools are co-producing the album of Casal covers, which will be recorded by a “wide range of artists from the rock, Americana and country worlds.” The first recording session will take place on Monday, February 10 with Casal’s band Circles Around the Sun backing guitarist Billy Strings.
Additional participating artists will be announced at the time of their recordings and video footage from the sessions will be shared. Filmmaker Justin Kreutzmann was tapped to helm the documentary film that will focus on Casal.
Net proceeds from the sales of Highway Butterfly will go to MusiCares and Backline.Care, organizations that support the mental and physical healthcare support for musicians. Additionally, 100% of Casal’s Highway Butterfly publishing royalties will be donated to the Neal Casal Music Foundation, whose mission is to supply musical instruments and lessons to school children in Casal’s native New Jersey.
A press release further explained:
Neal Casal brought joy to so many and yet departed with little of his own. The struggle for artists both emotionally and financially is real. Highway Butterfly: The Songs Of Neal Casal hopes to reflect some of the beauty Casal brought to this world back to him and in the process raise awareness and resources for musicians and artists facing the same struggles as Casal in pursuit of a life dedicated to music and art.