Elton John and Ed Sheeran are among the stars revealing their most precious childhood musical memory for new charity campaign ‘End The Silence,’ which aims to ensure no child suffers silently in an orphanage.
Pop superstar John chose “The Deadwood Stage (Whip-Crack-Away!)” by Doris Day, explaining he was given the “Calamity Jane” track as a boy by his mother, in return for having a tooth pulled out at the dentist.
“I clutched it – I loved it so much, I couldn’t wait to get home and played it,” he smiles. “I was so frightened to go to the dentist, and so it was bribery and corruption on my part to get that record, and I played it and I played it and I played it and I played it.”
For Sheeran, the song that evokes the most precious childhood memory is Van Morrison and the Chieftains’ “Carrickfergus.”
He explains that the track was “always played throughout my childhood” – notably on the “four- or five-hour drive to London” from his home in Yorkshire, as he sat in the back seat of his parents’ car.
“That was pretty much the only tape cassette they had. That and The Beatles.”
Emeli Sande, Paloma Faith and Paul Weller are also among the recording artists singing down memory lane, while Mark Ronson, Damon Albarn, Hozier and Rudimental’s Amir Amor among stars of forthcoming films in the campaign.
The celebrities are calling for the public to join in too, by picking their own favorite childhood song, along with a memory, and putting it on social media by using the link endthesilence.com.
Created by U.K. charity Hope and Homes for Children, the campaign aims to build the world’s largest online musical memory time capsule before Christmas, and raise 1.7m euros in donations.
The funds raised will help Hope and Homes for Children find families for 120,000 children suffering from silence and neglect in Ugandan and Rwandan orphanages, according to the charity.
“There should never be silence in a child’s life,” says John. “For a child to be deprived of music is one of most wicked things I can think of.”
The campaign states that every donation to the End the Silence campaign before December 27th will be doubled by the UK Government as part of its UK Aid Match scheme.