Captain Tom Moore sets a new Official Chart record for the oldest person in history to achieve a No.1 single in the UK’s Official Singles Chart with ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’, recorded with Michael Ball and the NHS Voices of Care Choir and released on Decca Records last week to help raise money for the NHS Charities Together Fund.
This record was previously held by Tom Jones who reached No.1 with ‘(Barry) Islands In The Stream’ at the age of 68 in 2009, 32 years younger than Captain Tom is now. On 30th April Captain Tom celebrates his 100th birthday, at which point he will still hold the top spot. The new duet has also become the fastest-selling single of 2020.
In what looked to be a very close race this week, Captain Tom has beaten Canadian artist The Weeknd to the top spot, as well as stars such as Drake and Dua Lipa. On Thursday afternoon, the veteran received the backing of Abel Tesfaye – known professionally as The Weeknd – who tweeted his support of Captain Tom’s Official Chart bid to his 11.8 million followers, wishing Tom a happy birthday.
Speaking from his home in Bedfordshire, where he lives with daughter Hannah and her family, Captain Tom said: “What wonderful news to receive today, a No.1 single and a record breaker too – my grandchildren can’t believe I am a chart-topper! I have to thank Michael Ball, the NHS Voices of Care Choir and everyone behind the scenes, who shared their talents and expertise in order to raise money for the NHS, to whom we owe so much. And, of course, the public for buying the single and donating – we’re in this together, and I am forever grateful for your support. And this just proves ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone”
Michael Ball, who today also achieveshis first ever No.1 single (‘Love Changes Everything’ reached No.2 in 1989), was delighted to lend his voice to the track adding: “This is the most extraordinary thing, one of the proudest moments of my career. But it’s not about me it’s about Captain Tom, thank you for giving him a No.1 on his 100th birthday!”
Co-Managing Director of Decca Records Group, Tom Lewis says of the triumph: “This has been the most incredible, exciting team effort. Everyone at Decca has completely fallen in love with Captain Tom. We felt we had to do everything possible to add a No.1 single and UK chart history to his already extraordinary list of achievements. We’re absolutely delighted for Captain Tom and also for Michael who has made chart history of his own by landing his first number 1 single. Special thanks must go to Ste Softley, Phil Bowdery, Nick Patrick and Jim Hawkins who created and delivered the track within one day!”
Chief Executive of Official Charts Company, Martin Talbot comments: “The sight of Captain Tom Moore and Michael Ball at the top of the Official Singles Chart this week should lift everybody’s spirits in these extraordinary times. We are absolutely delighted to see them at the pinnacle and setting new landmarks as they go – including a record as the oldest Number 1 Singles artist of all time. It has been a roller coaster week, starting with a big initial lead for Capt Tom, before The Weeknd closed the gap yesterday to almost nothing – before a massive surge in the final day by Capt Tom. Huge thanks to the Weeknd for lending his support at the eleventh hour. But this is Captain Tom’s week – congratulations sir and happy birthday for next us week. You are a hero to all.”
Captain Tom started his walk (100 laps of the garden, 10 per day) less than 4 weeks ago with the initial goal being to make £1,000 for the NHS, in time for his 100th birthday. He has now raised almost £29 million.
‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ featuring Captain Tom Moore, Michael Ball & the NHS Voices of Care Choir is out now on Decca Records www.michaelball.lnk.to/NeverWalkAlonePR