Peter Hooton, The Farm's lead singer, and Mick Jones of The Clash, with British Red Cross Chairman David Bernstein (second from left); Chris Shaw, Chairman of the Shorncliffe Trust (second from right); and re-enactors at Westminster (Photo: Centenary News)

'All Together Now' - Christmas truce song aims for Number One in the charts

Posted on on 15 December 2014
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'All Together Now', the hit single inspired by the Christmas truce, has been released as a new track to mark the 100th anniversary of the ceasefires along the Western Front on Christmas Day 1914.

A galaxy of music stars united as 'The Peace Collective' to re-record the song written by The Farm's frontman Peter Hooton in 1990 to publicise a moment that for him, 'resonates through history.'

The aim now is to make it the Christmas Number One in the singles charts, in tribute to the British and German soldiers who exchanged gifts and greetings a century ago, and also enjoyed football kickabouts in no man's land. 

All proceeds will go to the Red Cross and the Shorncliffe Trust, a charity campaigning to build a national education centre and heritage park on the site of a major First World War military training camp near the English Channel port of Folkestone in Kent.

Peter Hooton, joined by stars including Mick Jones of The Clash and Leo Sayer, relaunched the single at an event supported by British MPs at the Houses of Parliament in London on December 15th 2014.

Captain Robert Hamilton's diary account of the Christmas truce at Ploegsteert, Belgium, read at Westminster by grandson Andrew Hamilton, granddaughter Eppie Wells and 18-year-old great granddaughter, Anna Wells

The Farm's Peter Hooton explained that he'd originally produced 'All Together Now' almost 25 years ago because he felt the Christmas truce wasn't well known enough at the time.

"I think it's one of the greatest stories to come out of warfare. It was completely spontaneous, it was unofficial. It wasn't just the ordinary soldiers who were involved. Some officers were involved as well."

'All Together Now' was re-recorded following an approach from the English Premier League earlier in 2014, Hooton explained.

The song inspired the Christmas truce tournament started by the Premier League in Ypres in 2011, bringing together young players from England, Germany, Belgium and France. 

Schoolboy footballers from the League and German Bundesliga clubs are in the line-up as the backing choir for the new single, joining an eclectic mix of stars from the 1960s to the present day.

The singers and bands range from Engelbert Humperdinck and Suzi Quatro, to Leo Sayer, Shara Nelson from Massive Attack, Gorgon City, The Proclaimers and members of The Farm themselves.

Madness vocalist Suggs and The Clash's Mick Jones are the song's executive producers.

Chris Shaw, Chairman of the Shorncliffe Trust, says 'All Together Now' is the 'perfect record for this year.'

He said: "For us this is more than just a Christmas Number One. This is an anthem for everybody who's turned up to see the poppies at the Tower of London.This is for everybody who supports November 11th, everybody who's served for our country."

The Peace Collective's single 'All Together Now' is available from iTunes and Amazon. You can follow the release on twitter using the hashtag #AllTogetherNow, and more information is available on Facebook and TwitterThe single can also be bought as a CD.

Posted by Peter Alhadeff, reporting for Centenary News from Westminster

Images: Centenary News

Sources: British Red Cross; Shorncliffe Trust