Twenty-five years after its first release, and on the very date it hit the Christmas Number 1 spot, original label, London Records, in conjunction with Waltham Forest: London Borough of Culture 2019, has released a brand new recording of the classic East 17 Christmas No1 Stay Another Day.
The new version, specially arranged by acclaimed composer Joe Duddell (New Order, Elbow, Richard Hawley, Everything Everything and Daughter) features the 100-strong Waltham Forest Youth Choir accompanied by East London Brass, with East 17 founding member and writer of the original song Tony Mortimer on keys. Waltham Forest Youth Choir is formed of young people aged between 11 and 16, from schools across the borough.
This reworked version of the Christmas classic will be released through East 17’s original label London Records, 25% of the proceeds generated from all sales of the single will be donated to Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), the charity leading a movement against suicide.
Waltham Forest London Borough of Culture 2019 and London Records have chosen to re-record the track to remind people that we need to look after one another, and to celebrate life.
Tony Mortimer said: ‘Everyone remembers Stay Another Day as a Christmas record, but underneath the white parkas and fake snow is a song about male mental health and a story about my brother who took his own life. CALM is a charity very close to my heart and I hope this release gives people who are struggling the confidence to speak up and seek help.’’
Sam Hunt, Creative Director, Waltham Forest: London Borough of Culture 2019 added: ‘This is the perfect way to end our year as the first ever Mayor’s London Borough of Culture. It has been great to see co-creation in action with everyone working together to create this incredible version of a classic song. Releasing this now, in 2019, is a testament to the creative talent of Waltham Forest past, present and future. We are proud to be able to do this in partnership with CALM and highlight the importance of art and culture in relation to mental wellbeing.’
Simon Gunning, CEO of the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), said: ‘There’s such a powerful message behind Stay Another Day and we’re delighted to be a partner in this brilliant project. By supporting CALM and spreading this important message, we hope more people will know they are not alone and that there are people who can support them at what can, for many people, be a tough time. CALM’s free, and anonymous helpline and webchat is open every day across the festive period, from 5pm-midnight. The funds raised from this single release will contribute towards the operation of CALM’s life-saving services, which currently take in excess of 10,000 calls and webchats every month.’
Renowned film maker Steve Glashier came on board to make the music video for the project which you can watch here.
The single is released on London Records and can be downloaded here.
Photo credit: Lawrence Watson