Bob Geldof has announced the “worst kept secret in the world” – the re-convening of Band Aid with acts such as One Direction, Sam Smith and Chris Martin.
Do They Know It’s Christmas? will be re-recorded with a new generation of acts and some veteran stars to raise funds in the fight against the “filthy” and “inhuman” virus Ebola in West Africa.
The Boomtown Rats frontman said that he had been inspired to re-record the song because of the “phenomenal bravery of the National Health doctors and nurses who volunteered to go out there”.
It will be the fourth time the song – first released 30 years ago – has been recorded, with the most recent effort released a decade ago.
At a press conference in London alongside Midge Ure – with whom he co-wrote the track – he said it was not about nostalgia.
“I don’t like doing this stuff. It’s boring organising it,” he said. “It’s embarrassing calling artists you don’t know.”
Listing some of the singers on board so far, Geldof said that “giants of the past” featured, as well as “our own contemporaries said that they will come along to the party”.
He called on people to pay for the physical single – with a cover sleeve by Tracey Emin – instead of downloading it, or watching it on YouTube for free.
The single will not be available for streaming on Spotify until January.