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  • Southside

Who remembers The Concerned?

Friday, 13th April, 2018 1:00pm
Who remembers The Concerned?

Mary Black singing ‘Show Some Concern’ in aid of Concern’s relief work in Ethiopia.

Who remembers The Concerned?

Mary Black singing ‘Show Some Concern’ in aid of Concern’s relief work in Ethiopia.

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A CHARITY single featuring some of the biggest Irish stars of the 1980s is being remembered by Irish aid agency Concern as it marks its 50th anniversary.

‘Show Some Concern’ by The Concerned spent three weeks at number one in 1985, the same year as the Live Aid concert.

The charity supergroup included Dublin singers Mary Black, Flo McSweeney and Dave King of Flogging Molly fame.

They are being remembered by aid agency Concern Worldwide - as it thanks them and many other celebrities who have supported its work over the years.

The Concerned, made up of over 40 Irish stars, had a number one hit in March and April 1985 with the song and music video ‘Show Some Concern’ - a catchy anthem with lots of big hair and a mandatory 1980’s saxophone solo.

Concern’s one and only charity song – which was written by Paul Cleary from The Blades and produced by award-winning composer Bill Whelan – was the brainchild of the late Gerry Ryan and Paul Cleary’s then manager, Mark Venner.

The song stayed in the Irish charts for eight weeks, earning three consecutive number one positions, until it was topped by the worldwide hit charity single, ‘We are the World,’ by the Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie-led supergroup USA for Africa.

This followed the incredible success earlier that year with Bob Geldof and Midge Ure’s Band Aid single ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’ which led to the unforgettable global fundraising Live Aid concert on July 13.

The video of ‘Show Some Concern’ is a nostalgic throwback to the mid-80s, containing plenty of shoulder pads and rare not-to-be-taped-over footage of Ireland’s showbusiness top brass in 1985.

Dave Fanning, Pat Kenny, Gerry Ryan, Linda Martin, Christy Moore, Mary Black, Twink (Adele King), Maxi (Irene McCoubrey), Maura O’Connell, Freddie White, Eamon Carr, Johnny Duhan (who wrote The Voyage), Dave King (now singer with Flogging Molly) and Barry Lang are among those singing their hearts out in the video, which was filmed at the legendary Windmill Lane Recording Studios in Dublin.

Clannad, The Blades, Stockton’s Wing, Toy with Rhythm, Golden Horde and Sligo group Those Nervous Animals were among the Irish bands who assembled for the recording.

“It is great when you see high profile figures using their celebrity for the benefit of other people,” said John O’Loughlin Kennedy, who co-founded Concern in March, 1968 with his late wife Kay 50 years ago this year.

“Getting publicity for good work is often hard, but throughout Concern’s history many musicians and well-known personalities certainly made a huge effort to raise awareness and they deserve great thanks.”

The full version of the ‘Show Some Concern’ video – made available thanks to RTE - begins with several brief interviews with some of those in the supergroup and it has a small cut from a speech of Concern’s influential CEO at the time, Aengus Finucane, who said to those assembled: “We need inputs like this. We need them. They need them.”

A short segment from the song’s video also features in RTE’s hit series ‘Reeling in the Years’, when it highlights the top events of 1985.

Band Aid and The Concerned were joined by other famine-relief hits in the mid-80s, such as a single and complication album called ‘Stars’ by Hear ‘n Aid, which was a collaboration of hard-rock musicians and heavy metal bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Dio and Journey.

While it may not have been to everyone’s musical taste, Concern recognises that it was great artistic projects like ‘Show Some Concern,’ along with news reports by journalists, which captured the public’s attention at that time.

Maxi (front left), Leslie Dowdall (top middle), Maura O’Connell (front centre), Mary Black (back right) and Pat Kenny (right) with The Concerned singing ‘Show Some Concern’ in 1985.

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