Funky Voices Sing Spandeau Ballet’s classic Through The Barricades with the Legendary Tony Hadley for Children In Need
The UK's Funky Voices choir is hoping to raise as much money as possible with their charity single for the BBC's Children In Need this weekend. The single, a version of Spandeau Ballet's classic hit Through The Barricades, was recorded last Sunday at the BBC Maida Vale studios with 340 choir members and Spandeau Ballet's frontman, Tony Hadley.
"This is a different discipline for me," said Tony, who also honestly admitted it 'was a bit scary' singing with so many people. “But it was really good and really lovely. What Sandra and the choir have done here is fantastic."
Sandra Colston is the founder of Funky Voices. "She heads up the whole kit and caboodle," says Tony. "We met at a festival and she just approached me and said 'look, you know, we're a choir. We'd love to do something with you."
Clearly the direct approach works as at the time of writing not only has this wonderful collaboration actually entered the iTunes charts, but it is a mere 20 positions behind the BBC's official Children In Need single by Craig David. Funky Voices have therefore already improved on the success of their first charity single last year which was a cover of Stop! By Erasure.
“I chose Through The Barricades as it’s got a great meaning behind it.” said Sandra. A meaning that 30 years after Through the Barricades was first released seems even more relevant. In a moment of synchronicity Through The Barricades was in fact playing repeatedly on national radio on the day of the recording to mark the UK's Remembrance Sunday.
“All of the members have been working really hard,” stated Sandra, commenting on her choir's polished performance. “I put some difficult bits in there. I'm so pleased with the results. It went so much better than I could have ever thought it would.” When asked how she decides who sings what as part of the track's arrangement she said “I sit at the piano for a very long time and sometimes I pretend I'm Tony and I sing it through as Tony and sometimes I pretend I'm the choir.”
Sandra clearly knows and indeed loves her choir, and that feeling, judging from the 340 beaming faces wearing Pudsey bear ears, is utterly mutual, especially today. “Many of our choir are big fans and went to see Spandeau Ballet when they performed at the Royal Albert Hall,” explains choir organiser, Toby Croney smiling. It's this dedication for singing and each other that seems to be helping this 'little choir' as Toby calls it, achieve so much. “We have got no management, no record company. We are just a little choir, doing it all ourselves.” But perhaps with a little help from Pudsey on this occasion, who's dancing energetically around on stage in front of them.
'Through the Barricades is my favourite Spandeau Ballet song” said Tony as he was heading out the door. 'I think it's the best thing that Spandeau ever recorded. I never get tired of singing it.' And judging from the way this charity collaboration is selling people equally are not tiring of hearing it.