A lecturer of Philosophy at the University of York has joined a nationwide community of students attempting to create a charity Christmas number one single.
Nick Jones is a member of The Anarchy Xmas Project, which aims to bring together students from different UK universities, combining their musical talents to create a single for a Christmas release.
The brainchild of Sheffield students Iz El-Bahnasy and Tom Langhorn, the project began in January 2007 with a Facebook group inviting people to join the effort. A group of 12 musicians came together in September to record ‘Smells Like Christmas Time,’ which is due to be released on December 10. The money raised from iTunes downloads will be divided between Cancer Research UK, NSPCC, Oxfam, Shelter and Friends of the Earth.
Jones, who plays saxophone on the single, discovered the project by accident: “I stumbled across the group on Facebook, as you do, and thought it was a wonderful, audacious idea.” With a background in jazz, he joined what he describes as “a wonderful, eclectic mix of musicians” including a heavy metal drummer from Portsmouth, a harpist from Sussex and a trumpeter from Durham.
To reach their goal, 100,000 copies must be downloaded. “We’d like people to download the record. In doing this, they’ll be exercising people power and will be a part of history,” Jones said.
Behind the musical collaborators is a Facebook community almost 2000 strong. The project places a strong emphasis on the inclusion of all group members in decisions; it was through the group that the song itself and the five beneficiary organisations were chosen. “Everyone who supports the project is involved in it,” added Jones.
Anarchy Xmas has a MySpace profile, and a website at www.anarchyxmas.com, where fans can sign up to a mailing list. The making of the single has been documented in a video which can be seen on the group’s Facebook page.