Where Words Fail...: The Cover Version.
A few months ago, I mooted- gaining positive feedback- an idea for a concert: whereby some of the best and brightest (new musicians) would come together- in Chelsea- to perform together. The concert- entitled Where Words Fail...- is (was) designed to generate funds for (a variety) of charities. Spending a large chunk of time behind a laptop screen, I find that: I rarely get time to actually connect with people. I know so many people (across Facebook and Twitter), yet never actually ‘know’ many of them. So many great musicians; a multitude of stunning artists- I have met a paucity (of them). The aim of the concert was (not only to raise awareness/funds for charity), but get everyone in one room- and make a great sound. Unfortunately, financial issues (the high cost of hiring a venue for the night) have pushed this idea (into my hindbrain): it is something that will have to wait until later this year. It is definitely going to happen: money has reared its head; and stopped the charge in its tracks. It occurred to me that (a concert) is not the only way (to raise funds for charity) of getting multiple artists together- something simpler could occur. This brings me to this idea...
Having witnessed (some may say ‘suffered through’) another round of Band Aid (Band Aid 30); it occurred (to me) that so few new/unsigned musicians have been brought together- to do something similar. You don’t have to be a celebrity to make an impression: a common cause and ideal should bring EVERYONE together (and not be exclusionary). The finer details are yet to come; yet I have decided a few things- with regards this project.
To record on 15th August (hopefully will take one day)
It seemed that (the chosen song) need to have some uplift: was a crowd-pleaser; something that would raise the spirits. For that reason- and sacrilegiously to Elbow fans- One Day Like This seemed (the best choice). Not only is it a wonderful song: it is ready-made for a ‘group recording’. The lyrics are universal and quotable; the composition is wonderful and stunning- the outro. Is one of the finest (and rivals Hey Jude for its chant-at-the-top-of-your-lungs quality). I know the likes of Sarah Brightman (and I think Peter Kay!) have attempted the song: fine versions; neither I am hugely fond of. Like Band Aid (and Do They Know It’s Christmas?) and Perfect Day (when various singers contributed their vocals); this track (the cover version) will do the same. Every vocalist will get to sing a part of the song- when the final coda is repeated; all will combine. I will work with an arranger/composer, to slightly rework the track- give it a new spin. Essentially, the (reworked version) will not stray too much from the original. I hope to incorporate more guitar (especially in the final minutes); brass and Jazz instrumentation- in addition to piano (and softer, acoustic guitar).
This is the most important thing: if no money is raised; this cannot happen. Through a Kickstarter campaign, I hope to get the public engaged: raise money for a worthy cause. At the moment, the total (money needed to ‘hit the target’) will be around £4,000- that would cover both recording (and music video). Through the weeks, I will update everyone: how the project is going; what will happen next etc. In return- for public generosity- gifts and benefits will be offered. Among these will be the chance to appear in the music video; signed goods (from the musicians involved) etc. This- and all other details- will be cemented shortly: there is incentive to get involved. After everything has been completed- the song and video have been released- the track will go online: onto iTunes and Bandcamp. When a listener wants to play the track, they will have to donate £2; all of the proceeds from the song are divided among the musicians- who then give that money (to their chosen charities).
To shoot on August 16th (hopefully will take no longer than one day):
You can’t have a song without a video, right? Rather than a ‘studio video’ (recording the song as it is being performed), something more adventurous is required. Again, I will be working with others- in this case a director- to come up with the appropriate promotion. With a restricted budget, we can only do so much- but can still produce something quite memorable. The video will be shot in London- over the course of an entire day.
The basic idea of the video is this:
The first half (of the video) will be shot using a single camera, and will be a continuous shot- like Alfred Hitchcock's film, Rope. The scenes will be shot in the streets of London; involving all of the musicians (featured on the track) suffering some misfortune. Aimed to be comedic, the video will show various mishap and accident: it is a video that aims to be as 'fun' as possible.
As the video progresses- and the camera keeps moving- the musicians will each pick up a glow-stick: that will come into play in the final moments. Just before the song's (outro./round of choruses) comes into effect, the filming style will change- there will be a time-lapse interjection- before night comes. Converging to a London park (not sure which yet; hopefully Hyde Park), all of the musicians will be there- having overcome their bad day. Armed with glow-sticks (and a happy heart), they will all chorus (the song's mantra): "So,throw those curtains wide!/One day like this a year will see me right." The artists will walk/march in a line- zig-zagging in and out of one another; crossing each other's path- as they sing the lines.
With the shot illuminated with colour- under the night sky- the camera pans up- to see the London skyline (in all its beauty). The final seconds see the camera pan out- towards the gates/entrance of the park- to end on a comedic shot (keeping it under wraps, as it is cheeky/unexpected/not quite written yet).
I hope the video will be as simple and cost-effective as possible: above all, fun and easy to shoot. Speaking with a few (local) directors, I feel that it can stick to a slight budget- and still have all of (the details above) included.
The recording (of song and video) will take place towards the middle of August. As a result, the Kickstarter campaign will end towards the beginning of August. Exact dates will be confirmed- to ensure all the musicians/directors/producers etc. are available on these dates.
The ‘Guest List’:
There will be about 15 in total- maybe as many as 20- that will be contacted (invited) in due course.
In addition to guitarists; drummers and pianists will be needed- and a string quartet. Sourced from acts (I know via social media) and local musicians, there will be a total of around 15 (musicians).
The Plan Going Forward:
I have had a few people (stating they are interested), and will need to get exact numbers. Hopefully those who are ‘invited’ will be free- but it is important to get everyone together (and for all to be available on the same dates). Hopefully- by August- I can have everyone (saying ‘yes’) in and organise the entire details- ready to go. I will be posting/launching the campaign over the weekend, and will endeavour to post regular updates (as it goes along). It would be great- when it is ‘live’- to get people donating and involved. From the perspective of the musicians (who will be contacted): it would be great to have you all involved.
Watch this space...