Former Magic Numbers musician Michele Stodart, a mother of a child at a Hanwell school, has been working with pupils there to write and record an album in memory of their year 6 friend Shanade Sharma who died at Christmas.
Year 6 Oaklands pupil Shanade Sharma died unexpectedly of PVL staphylococcal aureuspneumonia and influenza B in December last year.
Headteacher Sash Hamidi says Shanade's family have fully supported the album project and have felt proud that the world can get to know about their special girl. Her younger brother Nashawn is still at the school.
Headteacher Sash Hamidi said,
"Shanade was a girl known by so many at Oaklands for her warmth, her smile and her bubbly personality. Her death affected us all and it was hard to see how to move forwards.
The music album has presented us with a way to do this. All the children singing songs from years gone by, coming together in an album creating a lasting legacy.
For Michele to lead this and take this further by working with Shanade's friends to write a song – Forever Young – to ensure Shanade's memory lasts forever, is something that has helped us all come to terms with such a tragedy. Music truly can help to heal the soul."
Michelle originally approached Oaklands' headmaster Mr Hamidi about writing and recording a track in which the children could express their feelings.
The project spiralled and and 'The Oaklands Sessions Album' was made.
All 517 students ranging from the age of 3 to 11 have been involved in the project; singing, playing instruments and bringing parents, teachers and the whole school together to make the dream come true.
Alongside re-creating some timeless classics, Michele set up a song-writing workshop with a small group from Year 6 resulting in the single 'Forever Young', in memory of their friend Shanade, which also features on the album.
The album will be released tomorrow and will be available to download on iTunes.
Proceeds from the sale of the album will be split between Shanade's favourite charity, The Dogs Trust, and a fund to buy new play equipment for the school playground.
Former Magic Numbers singer Michele Stodart wanted to help the children understand the tragedy of the death of year 6 student Shanade Sharma, so got the whole school together to write a song about her.
They've made an album covering the last 60 years of popular music including songs from Fleetwood Mac, Blur and the Carpenters. Here's the song - Forever Young - that they wrote especially for Shanade: