The Christmas record featuring Eagles Jason Kelce, Lane Johnson, and Jordan Mailata has already raised $250,000 that will go to the Children’s Crisis Treatment Center.
It’s indeed going to be A Philly Special Christmas for the Children’s Crisis Treatment Center, which is receiving $250,000 in proceeds from the holiday album that features Eagles offensive linemen Jason Kelce, Lane Johnson, and Jordan Mailata.
Executive producer of the album and former Eagles defender Connor Barwin said the initial goal was to raise about $30,000 for various Philly charities. But the album was met with such incredible demand that the initial goal was quickly shattered — the second pressing of the vinyl sold out in two minutes.
“I think we all feel lucky to be a part of it,” said Barwin. “We’re so happy that people responded the way they did to it and it’s been able to raise so much money and bring people a lot of happiness during the holidays in Philadelphia, which was our goal from the beginning.”
It’s not yet clear how many records were sold in all because sales of a third pressing of the green vinyl records are still being sorted out. Barwin said they’ve had order cancellations since the 24-hour sale that took place Friday.
Even so, enough records were sold to write a $250,000 check to Children’s Crisis Treatment Center, the primary beneficiary. The Eagles presented the gift Tuesday in front of Good Morning America television crews, according to Barwin — the amount of funds going to other charities will be sorted out as the third pressings’ sales are finalized.
Barwin credited the album’s success to how the album was both organic and special. The people involved and the quality of music produced were “magic in a bottle,” he said.
The album was backed by well known musicians, including Charlie Hall, the drummer for the Philly rock band the War on Drugs, who produced the seven-song LP. Other musicians from bands with Philly ties, including the Hooters and Dr. Dog, similarly lent their talents.
In a mini-documentary following the football players during the recording process, Kelce and his fellow stars are seen training with a vocal coach and impressing one another with their takes. In between shots, Kelce tells the camera he hopes the album can make Christmas better for those who are struggling and bring about some cheer.
“Or it doesn’t do well at all and I get a Christmas album that I can play for friends and family when they come over and be like, ‘Hey I did this one time and it was really cool,’” joked Kelce.
Turns out he had nothing to worry about.
To that end, it’s unclear if there will be yet another pressing of the album that features Elvis-like croons, falsettos, and jazzy saxophone, or if players will embark on an entirely new album. Getting this album across the finish line was not an easy lift, said Barwin.
“It’s really hard to get records pressed in the U.S. and it took a lot just to get the first two done, and for them to find a way to do the third was kind of like we said internally like a ‘Christmas miracle,’” he said, thanking suppliers who “bent over backward” to accommodate additional sales.
Still, there are younger players who have expressed interest in producing something similar for a good cause — once the season is over, of course.