Anchor's older people to storm the charts

The Anchor Community Band single is called "See Yourself" Anchor's older people are giving modern pop stars a run for their money and tackling loneliness in the process by releasing their own charity single today.

The Anchor Community Band’s single “See Yourself” challenges perceptions of old age. More than 350 older people from across the country have been involved in writing and recording it, the oldest band member being 96 years young. The single will be sold to raise money for national charity Contact The Elderly to help combat the loneliness felt by 1 million older people today*.

Busting stereotypes, research from older people’s care and housing provider Anchor found that one in five over 55s (21 per cent) regularly download music to listen to on their MP3 player and nearly half (47 per cent) usually buy their music online. Three quarters (74 per cent) of over 55s said they like hearing about new music and one third (31 per cent) surf the net to access new tunes.

The Anchor Community Band single has already hit no. 3 in the Amazon CD singles chart and has drummed up support from celebrities including Sir Terry Wogan, Linda Robson, Shane Ritchie, Coleen Nolan, Fiona Phillips, Carol McGiffin and Tony Robinson.

Out of recent chart toppers, Gangnam Style by Psy hit the mark for most older people – over half (55 per cent) had heard of the hit compared to 48 per cent who were aware of Rhianna’s “Diamonds” and one third (31 per cent) who had listened to “Beneath Your Beautiful” from Labrinth and Emeli Sandè. John Lennon’s “Imagine” was listed by the most respondents as their favourite song of all time.

Taking inspiration from their own musical heroes, band members including trumpet player David Speedy, 70, and wife Denise, 69, are angling for pop success. David and Denise live at Anchor’s Martham Court in Harpenden and have been married for 49 years.

Grandmother Denise said: “I first started singing at the age of ten in school and then joined a church choir. We both used to perform on the hotel and club circuit together in the Midlands and we’ve even played in a band with the whole family - our children are really proud of our involvement with the band, as are we.

“We feel very proud that we have contributed to a record which will hopefully raise lots of money for a worthwhile charity. We’re reliving our music dreams and are aiming to get into the top 40!”

The research also surveyed UK adults of all ages and found that women are free spirits when it comes to musical enjoyment - one fifth (21 per cent) of women admit they relish a warble in the bath or shower, and a fifth (21 per cent) also enjoy dancing to music when they are on their own, compared to just four per cent of move-shy men.

Older women are more likely to buy music from current top ten artists (71 per cent of women compared to 56 per cent of men). Over a third (38 per cent) of older women said that Michael Bublè would top their charts.

Jane Ashcroft, Anchor’s Chief Executive, said: “The Anchor Community Band celebrates the positive aspects of ageing and challenges stereotypes and misconceptions in a fun way.

“We know that music is extremely important for many older people and the band has come together to show that older people can do anything that younger people can do.”

Legal & General has kindly funded the production costs of the single, so that all income from sales, up to £15,000, will go to Contact the Elderly. In addition, all profit from the sales will be donated to the charity.

The single is now available to download from iTunes and Amazon, or for order as a CD from Amazon here.

The video for “See Yourself” can be accessed on YouTube here.

*Figure taken from the Campaign to End Loneliness.

Research methodology - The research for Anchor was carried out by Opinion Matters between 17.05.13 and 23.05.13. Sample 1319 Uk adults aged 55 and over, and 1610 UK adults of all ages.

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