If there’s one thing War Child does almost as well as raising awareness and support for children affected by war, it’s releasing compilation albums.
To commemorate the organization’s tenth anniversary, yet another impressive album is being released featuring some of the year’s biggest voices in music, thanks to Universal Music.
“Universal Music Canada is thrilled to be deepening our relationship with War Child. It is a great honour to be releasing an album that will continue to assist War Child’s mission around the world,” said Randy Lennox, President & CEO of Universal.
“Let It Rain” by Sy’rai ft. A.U.C.A.Y.D. will be the first single from War Child: 10, a song recorded in Freetown, Sierra Leone. A.U.C.A.Y.D. (Artists United for the Development of Children and Youth) runs a series of youth empowerment workshops, where children are invited to participate in activities surrounding music, drama and dance. War Child was originally founded by filmmakers Brian Wilson and Bill Leeson in 1993, and has established head offices in Canada, the UK and the Netherlands. Members of the charity work with communities in Afghanistan, Darfur (Sudan), Uganda, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Sri Lanka and Georgia.
Aside from the ground work in these countries, War Child has established an international calling card with its work from major artists around the world. Help: A Day in the Life was released in 1995 as the charity’s first musical effort, and the project continued to spiral from there. The 2005 release of Help: A Day in the Life, featuring an all-new lineup of musicians became the fastest-downloading album in music history.
War Child:10 is a star-studded affair, featuring Radiohead, New Order, Wolfmother, and Muse, among others, performing exclusive covers.
The album was compiled over a series of weeks when War Child began canvassing musicians to contribute, often not a difficult task for the organization that has garnered contributions from U2, Luciano Pavarotti, Oasis, Paul McCartney, David Bowie, Bloc Party, and Damien Rice among many, many others.
A number of the songs were gathered from previous recordings, such as Coldplay’s “How You See the World” and Radiohead’s “I Want None of This” which both appeared on Help: A Day in the Life. Among the new musicians, are Australia’s Wolfmother covering “Don’t Let It Bring You Down” by Neil Young, and New Order reworking a classic Jimmy Cliff protest song “Vietnam” for their first ever charity contribution.
Oasis also reappears on War Child: 10 with the first song ever recorded for the charity. In 1995, Oasis recorded a mellowed out version of their song “Fade Away” and handed it over to War Child.
The Kooks and Beck both appeared on the last War Child album, Heroes, featuring new artists covering old classics, such as The Kooks singing The Kinks’ “Victoria” and Beck performing Bob Dylan’s “Leapord-Skin Pill-box Hat.”
There is even a Patti Smith song rounding out the compilation – “People Have the Power” was re-recorded by Chantal Kreviazuk, Liam Titcomb, Shiloh and Lucas Silveira of The Cliks. Another Canadian contribution comes from K’Naan in the form of a bonus track, “Does It Really Matter?”, a cultural analysis of the changes in pop culture mimicking grander social reform.
War Child: 10 hit shelves online and in record stores across Canada on Dec. 1.
War Child: 10
- Coldplay – How You See The World No.2
- The Kooks – Victoria
- Jimmy Eat World – Firestarter
- Beck – Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat
- Muse – House of the Rising Sun
- Radiohead – I Want None of This
- New Order – Vietnam
- Wolfmother – Don’t Let It Bring You Down
- Oasis – Fade Away
- Beth Orton – Ooh Child
- People Have The Power
- Sy’rai ft. AUCAYD – Let It Rain (bonus track)