“The thing that’s going to sell it is just awareness,” says Our Lady Peace frontman Raine Maida, who spearheaded and produced the new War Child Canada album, Help: A Day In The Life. “When people find out that there are 18 incredible tracks by artists that haven’t released these songs before, you have to have this thing – it’s amazing, whether it’s for a charity or not.”
Originally intended to be an all-Canadian charity compilation, it soon morphed into an album that included U.K. artists as well. War Child U.K. put out its version in 2005 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the original Help Album and offered exclusive tracks to the Canadian comp. “We’re quite connected to the U.K. and some of those artists are incredible, so it was a good thing for the CD,” says Maida. Most of the songs have a solemn feel and lyrical poignancy, such as Coldplay’s “How You See The World No.2,” Gorillaz “Hong Kong,” Radiohead’s “I Want None Of This”, and Keane with Faultline’s take on Elton John’s “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.”
The Canadian contributions – also exclusive – include Sam Roberts’ strumming “Magic On My Mind,” City And Colour’s stunning “Missing,” The Dears’ quite literal “Ballad Of Humankindness,” and Bedouin Soundclash’s delicately defiant “Stand Alone,” which is the current single from the CD. “War Child itself has a campaign that has good public awareness of what it’s about and what it does,” says Bedouin frontman Jay Malinowski. “There’s a lot of really good music on the CD. It would be a shame if the record doesn’t achieve its goal of making some money toward the cause.”
All 18 songs were individually recorded, but the album itself was produced by Maida and executive produced by Bob Rock, Sony BMG Music Canada president Lisa Zbitnew, and War Child Canada president Eric Hoskins. There is also a bonus track by Maida and wife Chantal Kreviazuk entitled “Lebo’s River – A Tribute.” The spirited song also features the voices of late South African singer-songwriter Lebo Kgasapane who died of AIDS in 2004 and one of her close friends, Archie Khambula. “More than the song, it’s like a living eulogy. It’s pretty cool,” says Maida.
HMV Canada is offering a $3-off coupon for the holidays, so that the CD can be purchased for about $10. All proceeds from the sale of Help: A Day In The Life go to War Child Canada. To learn more about the charity, which is supported by such artists as Avril Lavigne, Sum 41, k-os, and the ones on the CD of course, go to www.warchild.ca
For the downloadable $3 coupon, please click on this link: http://sonybmg.ca/warchild/trackbytrack/indexcoupon.html
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