Who was late? And who was told off for looking too serious? Behind the scenes at Band Aid

Here's what happened when pop stars galore gathered to record a new version of the charity single to help Ebola victims

When a choir of chart-topping musicians got together on Saturday to record a new version of the Band Aid single Do They Know It’s Christmas?, BBC Newsbeat was on hand to record their every duff note.


So here’s what really went on when Bono, Ed Sheeran, One Direction, Emeli Sandé, Ellie Goulding, Chris Martin et al united for Band Aid 30.

1) Bob Geldof was impressed with how “sad” One Direction made the opening – almost “whispering in” the first few words.

2) Everyone was told off for looking too serious as they sang the famous “feed the world” phrases (which now includes “feel the world” and “heal the world”) so they all had to re-do it. We can imagine it’s is a tough line to sing with a grin…

3) Bono did the same line he’s done in the last two Band Aid singles (even though the lyrics have changed from “well tonight thank god it’s them instead of you” to “well tonight we’re reaching out and touching you”)

4) Bob Geldof had anticipated there being be a fight over Bono’s line because it’s become a “thing”.

5) Bob Geldof said he’d asked Coldplay’s Chris Martin if he wanted to have a go at Bono’s line but Chris didn’t want to. “It still belongs to him!”, he protested.

6) Sinead O’Connor stayed over at Bob Geldof’s house the night before the recording and had specifically requested the phrases she wanted to sing as they meant the most to her (“why is comfort to be feared, why is touch to be scared”).

7) Rita Ora was only at the recording for 90 minutes on Saturday, as she had to rush off to film The Voice.

8) Bono was late. The final chorus – which required everyone to be together – was supposed to be recorded mid-morning, but got pushed back because his plane was delayed by fog. He said he was “embarrassed” to keep everyone waiting.

9) Some of the Band Aid 30 artists – including Ed Sheeran, Ellie Goulding and Emeli Sandé – recorded solo versions of the entire track, allowing producers Paul Epworth and Midge Ure to later choose who sang which line best.


10) Bob Geldof asked Adele to sing but says she didn’t respond. “She’s not doing anything. It’s not this, not a record, it’s not writing, it’s not interviews, nothing. I put the call in, I didn’t speak to her.”