Hitting the right note for Emily

Aquablack do song for Emily Bell in conjunction with fundraising efforts by the Late Lounge
Aquablack do song for Emily Bell in conjunction with fundraising efforts by the Late Lounge
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BREAKTHROUGH music stars are singing out to help send brave youngster Emily Bell – who is battling leukaemia – on the trip-of-a-lifetime.

Courageous Emily (11) dreams of swimming with dolphins on a holiday to Disneyland Florida once her gruelling chemotherapy is complete.

Now up-and-coming Chesterfield band Aquablakk have joined the ranks of those rallying to raise cash for the trip by penning track A Song For Emily.

“I can’t believe there’s going to be a song for Emily, it’s brilliant,” said mum Andrea Bennett (40), of Brooks Road, Barrow Hill.

“This is also to raise awareness because leukaemia is so common.

“When Emily was first diagnosed we thought it was just our child then when we got to the hospital, the ward was full.

“But every single youngster has a smile on their face no matter what they’re dealing with.”

Self-styled “experimental” act Aquablakk, who are signed to South African label Sexy Records, hope to hit the right note when they record Emily’s song this month. The idea was born when they judged a singing contest boosting Emily’s bid at Chesterfield’s Late Lounge bar and manager Cliff Richard was asked to come up with another idea to raise cash for the cause.

A raffle prize to sing on the track, which will be available to download and could appear on one of the band’s albums due for release next year, was won by town doorman Will Aitken.

Cliff said: “As we’ve got to know Emily she has inspired us – now we want to do whatever we can to help.”

A Song For Emily, to also feature her rapping the opening lines, will capture the story of the Springwell Community School pupil’s cancer struggle from diagnosis in August 2009. Since then the little fighter, who recently won a Derbyshire County Council Young Achievers’ Award for bravery, has gone through more than most do in a lifetime.

After chemotherapy at Sheffield Children’s Hospital Emily’s progress was set back by a disease, blastomycosis, which meant she had to have parts of her spleen and lungs removed, as well as operations on bones decayed by steroids.

So far £6,000 has been collected to help make her wish come true but the total trip cost is expected to be £20,000.

Andrea added: “I think she deserves her dream after everything she’s been through.”

A night with Aquablakk and support acts will boost Emily’s cause at the Pacific Bar, Chesterfield, on Wednesday, January 19, from 8pm.

Tickets, priced £5, are available from event organiser Vicki Elliott on 07538 374435 or the bar on 01246 210700.

ellen.beardmore@derbyshiretimes.co.uk.