Amid some of the more dubious tributes surrounding the death of David Bowie, this is one that we can wholeheartedly support as it ticks more than a few boxes – Friend of Bowie: check – Worked with Bowie: check – In a good / relevant cause:check.
Rick Wakeman, who worked with Bowie on the original Life On Mars / Hunky Dory album, featured on BBC Radio 2 on the 11th of January to pay a heartfelt personal tribute to his friend and collaborator.
“It was obvious from the listeners’ response to Rick playing ‘Life On Mars’ on Radio 2 Drivetime last Monday, that they wanted to own a copy of this beautiful piece of music, as well as make a contribution. With Rick releasing this new recording it’s a perfect way to do that.”
– BBC Radio 2 presenter, Simon Mayo:
Following the overwhelming response to Rick Wakeman’s piano tribute to David Bowie, Rick has recorded new piano versions of both Life on Mars and Space Oddity with royalties going to Macmillan Cancer Support. The tracks are now available from Amazon, as well as iTunes and Tesco.
The video of his emotional performance has since been viewed over 2 million times on the BBC Radio 2 website and after receiving thousands of requests from fans, Rick headed back into the studio to re-record the tracks which include Life on Mars, Space Oddity andAlways Together.
Rick said: “I feel extremely fortunate to be able to release my piano version of David Bowie’s Life On Mars and Space Oddity, both of which I performed on the original releases. I think it’s very apt for the proceeds to go to Macmillan, a charity that is so crucial to so many people. I witnessed this first hand when I lost my mother to cancer and the work they do comes from the heart and is truly priceless.
“Whilst some amazing advances in medicine mean that some form of cancers have a very high survival rate and indeed prolonged life in others, with all cancers it is a very tough time for both the patient and their loved ones. Hopefully the songs will not only be a fitting tribute to David, but will also raise some money to help Macmillan with the wonderful work they do, ensuring no-one faces cancer alone.”
Jane Maher, Chief Medical Officer at Macmillan Cancer Support, says: “We were so very sad to hear the news about David Bowie and our thoughts are with his family and friends. Sadly the number of people with cancer in the UK is growing rapidly and half of us will face a cancer diagnosis at some point in our lives, so it has never been more important that everyone gets the emotional, practical, physical and financial support they need. We want people to feel comfortable talking openly about what they’re going through with friends, family and experts or – through our online community – other people whose lives have been affected by cancer.
“We know that music is something that not only brings people together, but also helps them through difficult times and so we are deeply grateful that Rick has decided to donate the proceeds from these tracks to Macmillan. The money raised will help us to continue to offer a range of support for anyone affected by cancer.”
For more information or support please visit macmillan.org.uk
About Macmillan Cancer Support
“When you have cancer, you don’t just worry about what will happen to your body, you worry about what will happen to your life. Whether it’s concerns about who you can talk to, planning for the extra costs or what to do about work, at Macmillan we understand how a cancer diagnosis can take over everything.
That’s why we’re here. We provide support that helps people take back control of their lives. But right now, we can’t reach everyone who needs us. We need your help to make sure that people affected by cancer get the support they need to face the toughest fight of their life. No one should face cancer alone, and with your support no one will.
To get involved, call 0300 1000 200 today. And please remember, we’re here for you too. If you’d like support, information or just to chat, call us free on 0808 808 00 00 (Monday to Friday, 9am–8pm) or visit macmillan.org.uk“