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National Coal Mining Memorial, Senghenydd

(March 01, 2013)

National Coal Mining Memorial, Senghenydd

WNMM Big Pit Piano Concert
Big Pit Piano Concert, September 2012

The National Coal Mining Memorial will be unveiled on 14 October 2013, the 100th anniversary of the Senghenydd Colliery disaster, where 440 people died in Wales' worst ever coal mining disaster. The National Memorial will be a national monument to remember the over 8,000 people who have died in Welsh coal mines. The memorial will cost over £220,000 and will contain a walk of remembrance, monument and garden.


WNMM Daniel & Laura Curtis, with Joe CalzagheAt Shabbey Road Recording Studios, Caerphilly
l-r Massimo Faraioli; Joe Calzaghe Jnr; Giovanni Malacrino; Joe Calzaghe; Daniel Curtis; Al Steele; Laura Curtis


A Miner's Song will be released on 16 March 2013. The charity single, uniting legends from Hollywood and Welsh music, will help raise funds for the memorial. The single will feature the singing talents of: Aled Jones; Caroline Sheen; Daniel and Laura Curtis; Darren Parry; Dennis O'Neill; Ioan Gruffudd; Iris Williams; Jamie Pugh; John Owen Jones; Jonathan Pryce; JP Jones; Mark Llewelyn Evans; Matthew Rhys; Paul Child; Paul Potts; Rebecca Evans; Rhys Meirion; Samantha Link; Siân Phillips; Tom Lukas; and Wynne Evans. With special spoken contributions by Michael Sheen, Boyd Clack, Joe Calzaghe and the late Richard Burton with the kind permission of the Dick Cavett Show.

The song also features over three hundred local musicians, choirs and bands from around South Wales including: BTM Brass Band; The Gentlemen Songsters Choir; The Richard Williams Singers; The Aber Valley Male Choir; and one hundred and twenty school children. The bass guitar on the song is played by world renowned musician Pino Palladino.

WNMM Daniel Curtis, Mark Llewelyn Evans and Laura CurtisDaniel and Laura Curtis, with Mark Llewelyn Evans

The recording of the song has taken place at locations all over the world. Co-producer and composer Laura Curtis said "We wanted to reach out to Welsh artists across the world and invite them to take part. Many of these artists have hectic schedules, due to them being in the middle of filming TV series or films. Going into a recording studio wasn't an option for them, so we came up with the idea of using iPads and iPhones for them to record their lines. The quality, once mixed into the song, is really high and the results have been brilliant."

 

WNMM Daniel & Laura Curtis, with Aled JonesDaniel and Laura Curtis, with Aled Jones; at RADA Studios, London


The song has been written and produced by Daniel and Laura Curtis from Caerphilly. This is not their first mining related project. In September 2012, they organised an underground concert in a mine to honour those who lost their lives in mining disasters. The concert involved lowering a piano 300 ft underground for the first time.

After being made redundant in 2011, Daniel Curtis made the decision to follow his life-time passion and become a self-employed professional musician and project manager, specialising in music events. Due to close family ties with coal mining he decided to put his efforts into a project that would raise money for a cause that was very important to him. We interviewed Daniel last year, about his work with The Great American Songbook.

Daniel Curtis said "My two great grandfathers died in mines and after the emotional experience of performing the concert underground last year I wanted to create a song that paid tribute to the legacy of coal mining. The response that we have received has been amazing and we have tried to involve everybody who has wanted to take part. Each artist has added their own personal style to the recording and made the song something very special. We are delighted with the way that it has turned out."

 

 

WNMM Daniel & Laura Curtis, with Michael SheenDaniel and Laura Curtis, with Michael Sheen


Michael Sheen said "I want to lend my support to this incredibly worthy cause that is part of our history and our heritage. I hope that everyone will get behind this and give it the boost it deserves."

The song will be available to buy from the 16 March in Tesco on iTunes, Amazon and many other outlets nationally. The song can be pre-ordered from the National Mining Memorial website.

The production of the single has been sponsored by a number of local businesses. The two primary sponsors are Giovanni's Restaurant, Cardiff and Foy Wealth.

In addition to featuring on the single, Boyd Clack has co-written the poem Mother to her son with Kirsten Jones, for the Welsh National Coal Mining Memorial, Senghenydd.


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