The Paul McCartney Project

Timeline More from year 1989
Release date:
May 02, 1989
Publisher:
PWL
Reference:
PWL 41

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Track list

Side 1



2.

Abide With Me

Studio version

About

As many outside Britain will know, 95 Liverpool fans were crushed to death at a football match in Sheffield on Saturday 15th April. Everyone wants to help after such a disaster, but the question is ‘how’.

Pete Waterman, of the vastly successful Stock Aitken Waterman writing/production team, drives to Liverpool every week to present a Saturday morning show on Radio City. On the day in question, Pete’s show reflected the city’s good-humoured anticipation of Liverpool’s Cup semi-final and the chance of a Final against local rivals Everton. Driving home that afternoon, he heard the tragic news on his radio and turned back to Liverpool to see what he could do.

Most requested record by distressed listeners was not the football anthem ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’, but ‘Ferry Cross The Mersey’. Pete decided a charity version must be recorded and immediately contacted Mike Stock to prepare the backing track.

Paul too was anxious to do something, so was delighted to get the call from Pete Waterman. He immediately accepted Pete’s suggestion and the logistics of recording Paul’s contribution were sorted out between them there and then.

Good intentions aren’t enough: like any other single, a charity record needs the right ingredients to make an impact. Pete decided the public had become used to ‘massed choir’ charity records and so chose five Liverpool artists to give a personal, less crowded effect. The others were Gerry Marsden, who as composer and copyright holder waived all his rights, Holly Johnson (once of Frankie Goes To Hollywood) and the Christian Brothers (band name: the Christians).

The single was released on 2 May. B-side is ‘Abide With Me’ from the Liverpool Cathedral service the day after the tragedy. There will be no video or photos of the recording sessions and the sleeve carries some suitable symbol of the event, rather than pictures of the artists. We dearly hope the record is high in the charts by the time you read this.

From Club Sandwich N°52

Last updated on March 20, 2020


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