At 8pm on 7 October, the BBC is broadcasting a unique musical event across every main BBC radio station and television channel (except Radio 3, alas, which was midway through a Brahms broadcast from St George’s, Bristol).
To launch BBC Music, The Beach Boys’ hit ‘God Only Knows’, from their 1966 album Pet Sounds, receives something of a glossy makeover by 27 musicians from all walks of musical life – pop, rock, jazz, folk, world and classical – accompanied by the BBC Concert Orchestra (watch video below).
Alongside the likes of Elton John, Pharrell Williams, One Direction and Stevie Wonder, some of classical music’s current stars make an appearance, including trumpeter Alison Balsom, BBC Young Musician winner Martin James Bartlett (pictured above), violinist Nicola Benedetti (above), mezzo-soprano Danielle de Niese, choirmaster and presenter Gareth Malone and Radio 3 presenter, Katie Derham (above), who dusted down her violin to take part.
‘I was honoured to be asked to be involved, especially when I discovered what company I was in!’ Derham told BBC Music Magazine. ‘I don’t have any solos or anything – but it’s one thing playing along, it’s quite another going to lay down your track in a recording studio and get it absolutely perfect…
‘It’s so important for the BBC to wave the flag for its music broadcasting – there’s so much that goes on at the BBC. And this is a great way of celebrating its variety of music-making and live performance. And, of course, the BBC itself is such an important figure in the music industry, from commissioning new work to supporting new talent.’
‘God Only Knows’ will be released as a single in aid of BBC Children in Need in a first-time collaboration between Sony, Warner and Universal Music. It will be available to download from midnight on Tuesday 7 October