Who Was Replaced In “Do They Know It’s Christmas” Redux? Everyone But Bono, Basically
As you may know by now, a cover of the 1984 supergroup song "Do They Know It's Christmas?" debuted this week, serving as a a revamp of the star-studded Bob Geldof project Band Aid. The intent is still good, but times have definitely changed: record sales for the single back then benefited the famine crisis in Ethiopia, whereas, today, downloading the song will send proceeds over to help out with the current Ebola epidemic.
The other thing is... well, unless you're Bono, not everyone in the original "Do They Know It's Christmas" is as relevant today. Subsequently there's been a bit of a line-up switcheroo to update the song for the new generation. Is it perfect? Eh. To be honest, I'm just grateful that halfway through nobody was like, "Drop the bass, Skrill." Around this time of the year, it's the little things that count.
Click through to see some notable changes in this thoroughly modern remake.
1984: Paul Young
Considering Young kicks off the original tune from 30 years ago, it’s amusing that he’s relatively unheard of these days.
2014: Olly Murs
Consequently, I have absolutely no idea who Murs is either, making this a perfect match.
1984: Boy George
Quite a character, always down for some eyeliner and flamboyant outfits.
2014: Sam Smith
The equally talented Smith fills in on one of George’s lines, and he kind of signifies the more androgynous aspect of George. Smith also, rather ironically, feels like a Morrissey stand-in. (It’s casual knowledge that Mozz HATED the original 1984 endeavor).
Once a trio of girlish pop queens that churned out tunes like “Venus” and “Cruel Summer,” now mere shadows of the gigantic hair they once sported.
2014: Rita Ora
Bringing big-haired realness into the next generation.
1984: Spandau Ballet
A girlish new wave boy band that none of us remember 30 years from then.
2014: One Direction
Give it time. No matter how much #ZaynsNewHair is trending on Twitter, there’s no WAY we’ll be talking about One Direction three decades from now. They are so of-the-moment, and in that sense they make good counterparts.
1984: George Michael
The then-feathered-haired co-singer of Wham! was a welcome face in the 1984 video.
2014: Paloma Faith
A more overtly feminine voice, but proof that you always need someone with voluminous locks to bring up the group average. Bouncy hair NEVER goes out of style.
1984: Phil Collins
The man behind Genesis, the father of Lilly “Perfect Eyebrow Game” Collins.
2014: Nick Grimshaw
Certainly has more hair, I’ll give him that.
1984: Duran Duran
They did “Hungry Like the Wolf,” which ends up on every Best of the ’80s compilation.
They are also a band, and therefore basically the same thing.
1984: Kool & the Gang
Soul and funk representation.
2014: Fuse ODG
Hip hop representation.
1984: Status Quo
Providing that rock vibe that you can’t even really hear in the song.
Providing that electronica vibe that you can kinda-sorta-not-really hear in the song.
A true hero of rock and roll.
2014: Ed Sheeran
That guy with the acoustic guitar that seems to follow Taylor Swift around.
1984: David Bowie
I know David Bowie, you know David Bowie, and the world of music would be empty without the creative genius that is David Bowie.
2014: Clean Bandit
They are certainly not David Bowie.
1984: Heaven 17
What the hell is Heaven 17?
Image: Virgin/Arista/Gerard Mankowitz
What the hell is Elbow?
1984: Paul McCartney
Probably one of the more famous faces of the bunch. He was a Beatle, for God’s sake.
2014: Sinead O'Connor
Probably one of the more famous faces of the bunch. Kind of depressing.
A hyper-feminine, often dreadlocked pop singer who gave Boy George a run for his money when it came to crazy fashion.
2014: Angelique Kidjo
I get the feeling Kidjo would appreciate Marilyn’s styling.
1984: Holly Johnson of Frankie Goes To Hollywood
Bastions of eccentricity.
Also basking in some eccentricity.
Known for their trend-setting styles and disco beats.
Known for his Halloween parties with ex-wife Heidi Klum, and the best song of all time: “Kiss From a Rose.”
1984: Paul Weller
Of the Style Council.
2014: Chris Martin
Of Coldplay. Please, Martin WISHES he was Bono. That in mind…
The most striking line in “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” ‘84 is punctuated by Bono. It’s a scathing, “Well, tonight thank god it’s them instead of you.” Dude. Bono’s like your mom when she chides you for not eating your Brussels sprouts because there are “starving children out there.”
In any case, the 2014 version of the song features…
2014: Bono (Still)
What can I say? Bono is still somewhat kicking around in 2014. The lyric is mercifully changed to a more subdued, “Well, tonight we’re reaching out and touching you.” Far less guilt-trippy, for the next generation.