Husband's musical tribute to late wife pipes up £700 for charity

By Swindon Link - 29 May 2019

CharityArts and Culture

In memory of his late wife, Clarry Bean’s Christmas song ‘Christmas (The Way It’s Meant To Be)' has piped up more than £700 for charities including Prospect Hospice.

Clarry Bean’s song ‘Christmas (The Way It’s Meant To Be)', a moving musical tribute to his late wife Christine, has raised almost £800 in support of Prospect Hospice and Vasculitis UK.

Following a live launch event in November 2018, the song was released on CD and as a digital download in December 2018.  A quarter of all proceeds from sales of the single are being donated to Prospect Hospice, who cared for Christine at the end of her life, and to Vasculitis UK, who supported her, and her family, throughout her illness. Christine suffered from Granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA), which is a form of Vasculitis, and was also diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2014.

The recording features Clarry on lead vocals, with additional vocals from his son Danny Bean and daughter Abby Mansi, as well as a backing chorus featuring many of Christine’s relatives and friends. Backed by talented local musicians including co-writer Andy Merryweather on piano and Wurlitzer, the song also features a string quartet. 

Clarry said: “I was deeply honoured to perform the song live at a number of events in December, including the Mayor of Swindon’s Christmas Concert in the Council Chamber, and Prospect Hospice’s own Light Up A Life Service in the grounds of the hospice. The response from people who heard the song was truly humbling and unexpected. It became obvious to me very quickly that those who have lost loved ones really connected with the message of the song, and found it both touching and comforting. I am so proud that what started out as a small personal tribute to my amazing wife ended up having such an impact on bereaved families. Christine’s wonderful spirit lives on through the recording. And of course thanks to the support of everyone who purchased or streamed the song, I have been able to donate £391.95 to each of my chosen charities.

"As a song, 'Christmas (The Way It’s Meant To Be)’ comes from quite a different angle and offers a unique perspective on Christmas. With all the uncertainty and negativity in the world, people need a positive and consoling message, especially at Christmas time, and this song achieves that."

Sheryl Crouch, Head of Fundraising added: “We were thrilled to be chosen by Clarry and his family as one of the beneficiaries of this lovely Christmas song in memory of Christine, what a beautiful tribute to her. When we played it throughout the hospice over the Christmas period all the staff and visitors that heard it just had to have a copy.

"On behalf of all the patients and families that we care for, a big thank you to Clarry and everyone that supported him in producing the single, for donating a percentage of the proceeds towards the care we deliver.”

The CD release of the single features an exclusive second track, which is a remixed version of Christine’s 2007 recording of Sting’s “Fields of Gold”, featuring Clarry and Danny on vocal harmonies and with newly recorded piano accompaniment by Sheila Harrod. This song is not available as a download.

'Christmas (The Way it’s Meant To Be)' will be available again this Christmas to download and stream from major digital platforms, as well as on CD by mail order via the official website www.illuminatemylife.co.uk

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