Some of the biggest names in pop music gathered in London to record a new version of Do They Know It’s Christmas? – 30 years after the original Band Aid hit.
Stars including One Direction, Bono, Chris Martin, Ed Sheeran, Elbow and Roger Taylor arrived in Notting Hill to lay down the track, which will raise money to fight Ebola.
The chorus is the same as the original – though some of the verses have been tweaked to reflect the plight of those affected by the disease in West Africa.
The song will premiere on Sunday’s X Factor and will be available from 8am on Monday.
It has been immediately installed as the favourite for Christmas Number One.
Boy band One Direction had the privilege of singing the first line – and organiser Bob Geldof revealed he was “blown away” by their performance.
“It’s beautiful, seriously. That is the hardest one to do because people know the song so they are worried they’re going to mess it up and they didn’t at all,” he said.
“It was so sad what they did. I never expected that from them.
“Harry Styles wanted to play it back so I did and it’s very moving. They are whispering.”
Singer Emeli Sande explained how Geldof – who co-wrote the song with Midge Ure – made a speech to the artists before they recorded the chorus.
“Bob gave a really touching speech before we started singing so I think that really got everybody in the mind-frame that we needed to be in to remind us it’s fun, but that we’re here for a really serious reason,” she said.
“It was him expressing how passionate he was about this cause and how it’s so unnecessary that so many people should be dying.”
Chancellor George Osborne called Geldof on Saturday morning to reveal he would waive VAT on the single – meaning all the money will go to charity.
U2 frontman Bono, who also sang on the original, criticised rich countries who were not giving as much in aid as the UK.
“If every country had the values of Great Britain and kept the promises they make at these big G8 meetings and the like we wouldn’t have to be standing here,” said the singer.
The original 1984 hit raised 8m for those suffering from famine in Ethiopia.
This is the fourth version of the song – the most recent was released a decade ago.
Other acts who took part this time around included Bastille, Ellie Goulding, Jessie Ware, Olly Murs, Disclosure, Paloma Faith, Rita Ora, Sam Smith, Seal, Angelique Kidjo, Clean Bandit and Sinead O’Connor.
:: The single will cost 99p to download or 4 to buy on CD.