Hillsborough Justice group to release He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother for charity single
Hillsborough Justice campaigners and Liverpool MP Steve Rotherham unite with Robbie Williams and a host of musicians to re-record Hollies' classic for charity tribute single.
Hillsborough campaigners have launched a bid to land a Christmas number one song with a charity single to raise funds for the legal costs of fresh inquests.
Liverpool MP Steve Rotheram today launched the plans to re-release He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother by the Hollies.
The song was played during an emotional tribute to the 96 who died at Hillsborough at Goodison Park last month, after the release of the independent panel's report.
It was also the last record bought for Hillsborough Family Support Group chair Margaret Aspinall by her son James, 18, before he died at the disaster.
The record will be produced by the world renowned Triple Ivor Novello winning songwriter Guy Chambers.
It will feature artists including; Robbie Williams, Mick Jones (The Clash), Peter Hooton (The Farm), Pete Wylie, The Justice Tonight band, Richard Hawley, Chris Sharrock (Oasis), Ren Harvieu, Dave McCabe (The Zutons), Paul Heaton (Beautiful South), Hollie Cook, Jon McClure (Reverend & The Makers), John Power (Cast) and Gerry Marsden (Gerry and the Pacemakers).
Paloma Faith, Beverley Knight, Mel C and Shane MacGowan were added to the growing list of names with Paul McCartney also being touted as joining the all-star cast.
Rotheram said more names will be announced in the coming days. The record will be released on December 17 with the aim of beating the X-Factor to the Christmas number one.
All artists involved are giving their time for free, and all proceeds from the sale of the single will go towards the Hillsborough Families legal costs in their fight for justice.
Last week attorney general Dominic Grieve said he would apply to the High Court to quash the "accidental death" inquest verdicts, which was based on lies.
Chambers said: "I am deeply honoured to be asked to produce this record for the 96.
"If we can help to raise money to support the families' legal battle so that they finally get their time in court then our job will be done.
"I spent my teenage years in Liverpool and feel a deep affection for both its musical heritage and the unique solidarity of its people."
Rotheram, MP for Liverpool Walton, paid tribute to the families' fight for justice over 23 years.
"Today, I am proud to announce that a group of some of the biggest UK recording artists are coming together to record 'He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother' to support the Hillsborough families fight for justice and to raise funds for any future legal costs.
"Whilst we are confident that the campaign for truth and justice is nearing a conclusion, for 23 years the bereaved Hillsborough families have carried the eternal flame of hope that we would one day see those responsible brought to justice.
"All profits from this CD will go towards assisting with any legal costs incurred in that fight. The families have suffered enough".
Liverpool Legend Kenny Dalglish added: "The families of the 96 should never have been in the position they are now in, of having to fight to get the accidental verdicts from the 1989 inquests overturned.
"I will continue to support their dignified campaign every step of the way."
The single will be recorded by Chambers, who has worked with stars such as Robbie Williams, Kylie Minogue, Tom Jones, at his North London studio next week.
Further sessions will take place at the world famous Metropolis Studios in London. Pledge Music will also be offering a host of exclusive items via their website to aid the campaign www.pledgemusic.com
In 2009 when Rotheram was Lord Mayor of Liverpool he helped bring together Peter Hooton, Dave Pichilingi (Liverpool Sound City), Phil Hayes (The Picket), Kevin McManus from Liverpool ACME, musicians, footballers and Liverpool celebrities to record 'Fields of Anfield Road' for the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy. The record then spent two weeks in the top 20.
Further reading on Getintothis: