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  • Janis Ian & Shadow Morton backstage at The Tonight Show - photo by Gilbert for Life Magazine
  • Janis Ian & producer Shadow Morton recording - photo by Gilbert for Life Magazine
  • Janis Ian & Joni Mitchell backstage - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian & Odetta - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian & Steve Goodman 01 - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian & Steve Goodman 02 - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian  & Taj Mahal - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian with Bruce Springsteen, radio personality Ed Sciaky, & Billy Joel backstage at the Academy of Music, Philadelphia - photo by Peter Cunningham
  • Janis Ian, Mary Black, & Joan Baez backstage at Joan's show - photo by Joe Bangay
  • Janis Ian with the Abfab girls, backstage at the Royal Albert
More About The Pearl Foundation

Pearl Foundation money FAQs

  1. What items can I buy if I want my money to go only to the Foundation, with none of it going to your overhead?
    You can buy a living room concert, the hand-written lyrics, or any other item marked "100% of monies spent on this item go to the Pearl Foundation".
  2. If I pay by credit card, is it the same as sending a check? Can I still deduct it?
    No, not according to the IRS. We're sorry, but the Pearl Foundation does not have a credit card account. We're cheap on the Foundation's behalf, and those accounts cost money! We have recently added the alternative of charging Living Room Concerts, handwritten lyrics etc. to credit cards, but this is only for convenience's sake, for those fans who've said they could purchase more if they could charge it to a credit card. When you charge a Foundation item to your credit card, it shows up on your statement as having been paid to the Revenge Touring/Janis Ian account. That money is then transferred to the Foundation The only way an item is deductible as a contribution is if you pay by check or money order or a Paypal donation, because the Paypal account also goes straight to the foundation. For high dollar items such as lyrics or LRC's, we prefer a check, and so should you! If you have further financial inquiries, please send an email to our financial director.
  3. Why can't everything I spend go to the Foundation?
    Just think about that for a minute. Where does the product come from? Manufacturers or retailers. We have to pay for the product before you can buy it. We have to pay for shipping, storage, packing materials, and labor - all before that product is even ordered! If Janis were rich enough to absorb 100% of all those costs, she would probably not be on the road very much - she'd be sitting on an island in the Bahamas. At live shows, in addition to all of the up-front costs, we also pay the cost of shipping to the venue, the venue commissions (20-40% of each sale is taken off the top by the venues nowadays), and franchise taxes. Last but not least, someone has to be paid to do the bookkeeping, so the IRS can be satisfied that we're operating on the level.
  4. Then how do you determine what the Foundation will get at the end of each year?
    100% of Paypal donations made to to pearlfoundation@janisian.com go straight to the Foundation, as do checks made out to the Foundation, and 100% of anything in the show "tip jar". Then, at the end of each year, we add up all the merchandise profits from shows and the website; then we add up all the costs associated with merchandise, and a small percentage of website costs (the Yahoo! fees, for instance). The difference is what goes to the Foundation. In other words, Janis doesn't make a profit; she just gets some of the monies she's personally laid out for the Foundation paid back. In fact, when you pay for merchandise through Paypal, your postage costs are also donated to the Foundation, and Janis has to pay for them herself!
  5. So what kind of costs are associated with the merchandise and website?
    Here are some of the annual costs Janis pays up front: monthly server fees, monthly maintenance fees, cost of maintaining the domain name, cost of updating the site and creating each year's holiday sale site (although much of the time is donated, we can't ask all the programmers to work for free), shipping fees for merchandise, import and franchise taxes, business management fees for figuring and filing the taxes (Janis' business management office donates the rest of the financial fees, or Janis absorbs it), purchase and/or production of merchandise, a portion of the cost when we have a merchandise sales person on the road, venue fees, merch salesperson salary... well, the list just goes on. That's one reason you see so few high-dollar items on the site, and why items are added so slowly; workshirts, for instance, ran us $16 per shirt before shipping or artwork were figured in. We try to carry mostly items that are low-cost and low-shipping.
  6. Can I get a little history here? and how do you choose the schools?
    In 1998, Janis held the very first international Internet auction. Yes, pre-Ebay! 100% of those monies were donated to Goddard College, forming the first perpetual Pearl Foundation Scholarship. The Foundation itself was formed about three years later. We then began concentrating on schools serving the more challenged areas of the country. Because of our many foreign donors, we only endow at schools with an international student body as well as students from the United States.
  7. How much has the Foundation raised and given away, anyhow?
    As of January 2012 the Foundation had raised and given away a total of $555,000. We can hardly believe it ourselves!
Tour Dates

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