Saturday 17 March 2018

Music stars and MPs record Jo Cox charity single

KT Tunstall said she hoped the record 'galvanises people' in a 'divided world'
KT Tunstall said she hoped the record 'galvanises people' in a 'divided world'

Politicians and stars from the world of music have joined forces to record a charity single in memory of the late MP Jo Cox.

Kaiser Chiefs' Ricky Wilson, singer-songwriter KT Tunstall, Cockney Rebel's Steve Harley and pop star David Gray are among those taking part in the special recording of The Rolling Stones' You Can't Always Get What You Want.

A group of 20 MPs from across the political spectrum, members of parliamentary rock group MP4 and the Royal Opera House Thurrock Community Chorus will also feature on the track.

Kevin Brennan, Labour MP for Cardiff West, member of MP4 and organiser of the project, said he hoped the song would show "there's more that unites than divides us".

Mrs Cox, a mother of two, was killed outside her constituency surgery in Birstall, near Leeds, in front of her staff and residents on June 16.

The single, which will be released next year, will mark the launch of the Jo Cox Foundation - a charity raising funds for causes close to the late MP.

MPs gathered at the Backstage Centre in Thurrock, Essex, on Thursday to record their part on the track, conducted by Suzie Rigby, who has worked with The Rolling Stones.

Mr Brennan said there had been "mass hysteria" when Tunstall met MPs, with many posing for selfies with the pop star.

The singer said her decision to take part in the project in memory of Mrs Cox was a "complete no-brainer".

She told the Press Association: "There's too few of her in the world so it's just incredibly sad that she has gone.

"At the same time I think she'd be really happy that we are doing something so joyful and so celebratory and fun in her honour - and to help raise money and awareness for her causes."

Tunstall said she hoped the record "galvanises people" in a "divided world".

She said Gray - who recorded his part of the track on the road - sounded "amazing" and said the song was "really rocking".

Mr Brennan said he felt the song, first released in 1969, reflected the ethos of Mrs Cox, who was Labour MP for Batley and Spen at the time of her death.

He said: "Jo Cox was someone who really tried very hard until she got what was needed and that's a message within the song.

"She also said that people should work together - that we are stronger together, there's more that unites than divides us.

"So we wanted to do something that reflected that and would help raise awareness of the foundation."

Labour MP Tracy Brabin, who won the by-election in Batley and Spen following the death of Mrs Cox, said: "I think it's an amazing event because it's bringing people together cross-party.

"There's Conservatives, there's Labour and I think that's what Jo always loved, to be able to work - when the idea was big and important - across parties."

The former Coronation Street star said it was happening in "desperately sad circumstances" but Mrs Cox would have wanted to "bring people together in a joyous scenario where we can do something positive".

Describing her hopes for the single, she said: "I'm hoping it will be uplifting and remind people of her values, about social cohesion and about working as a community."

Press Association

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