The "Better Times" Project

Janis Ian & Friends

Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe

Listen to or download the song.

Play this on the jukebox and listen to a lot of other versions too.
You can also download all the different musical versions, in the order they went up.

Check Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe’s website, Facebook page, Instagram page, YouTube channel and Twitter feed for more info.

Vocals: Nate Jacobs
Ariel Blue
Raleigh Mosely II
Tsadok Porter
Music arranged by Liston Gregory
Produced by EJ Porter, Drummerboy Productions
Sound Engineer: Michael Mendez
Costumes: Adrienne Pitts
Filmed, directed & edited by James Berry
This video was shot on the rooftop terrace of WBTT’s Education and Outreach Building at its theatre arts center in downtown Sarasota, Florida. 

From Janis: I first heard about WBTT when I moved to the Sarasota area and began looking for “my colleagues” – writers, dancers, singers, artists of any sort who shared my vision. Just before Covid-19 hit, I spent an afternoon with Debra Flynt-Garrett, Scott Ferguson, Nate Jacobs (founder and artistic director, lead singer on this “take”), and others from their organization. Debra and I made tentative plans for different ways I could become involved, giving a series of master classes for their students, singing at their yearly fund-raising event. Of course, all that changed, seemingly overnight. The biggest loss was their summer camp program, and since my own experiences at Woodland, Webatuck, and Abelard informed and changed my life, I also felt the loss, and resolved to support them in whatever way I could. In the months since, WBTT have been busy re-organizing themselves so students can continue to learn, and grow, as professionals and as human beings. Because of the intense work on transitioning from “live” to “virtual”, their timeline for the Better Times Project kept getting pushed further and further away, until I almost gave up. Then, just a few days ago, this stunning piece arrived. I am extremely happy they’ve joined us in this effort to bring hope, and dignity, in these troubled times. 

From their website: “Founded in 1999 as a non-profit organization, their mission is “to produce professional theatre that promotes and celebrates the African American experience, attracts diverse audiences, supports and develops African American artists, and builds the self-esteem of African American youth.”

(Janis Ian)

Better times, better times will come.
Better times, better times will come.
When this world learns to live as one,
oh, better times will come

When we greet each dawn without fear
knowing loved ones soon will be near
When the winds of war
cannot blow any more
Oh, better times will come


Though we live each day as our last
we know someday soon it will pass
We will dance, we will sing
in that never-ending spring
Oh, better times will come