Rita Ora made her way into a west London recording studio on Saturday afternoon as celebrities converged to record a fundraising track for those affected by the Grenfell Tower blaze.
The singer, who grew up close to the site of the tragedy, was flanked by bodyguards as she made her way into Notting Hill’s Sarm Studios to record a cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water.
Her appearance came after Simon Cowell pulled together some of the UK’s biggest musical acts to collaborate on the single, with all proceeds going to victims.
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For a good cause: Rita Ora made her was into a west London recording studio on Saturday afternoon as celebrities converged to record a fundraising track for those affected by the Grenfell Tower blaze
The music mogul, 57, took action after watching harrowing news coverage of the devastating blaze, which has so far claimed 30 lives and injured dozens more.
Rita was joined by fellow collaborators Leona Lewis, Craig David, and Paloma Faith ahead of the hastily organised recording session.
Britain’s Got Talent winner Tokio Myers, Libertines star Karl Barat, soul singer Gregory Porter and James Blunt – who has returned to the UK from his home in Ibiza to record the track – were also seen outside the studio on Saturday.
Lending her voice: The singer, who grew up close to the cite of the tragedy, was flanked by bodyguards as she made her way into Notting Hill’s Sarm Studios to record a cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water
Joining in: Craig David (L) and Leona Lewis (R) were also seen outside the studio on Saturday
Happy to help: Leona offered a beaming smile ahead of her visit to the studio
Here she comes: Rita’s appearance came after Simon Cowell pulled together some of the UK’s biggest musical acts to collaborate on the single for the victims of the Grenfell blaze
Incoming: Rita was making an appearance at the studio two days after helping out at the site of the tragedy
It is understood that One Direction star Liam Payne, Louisa Johnson, James Arthur, Emeli Sande, Pixie Lott, urban grime artists Stormzy and Skepta, plus sixties legends The Who will also join forces to record the track.
‘Until that last note has been finished, we will not be off the phone,’ Cowell told The Sun. ‘We started 24-hours ago and already we’re getting calls coming in, mainly from Brits.
‘A lot of London artists, people like Skepta, Stormzy, Emile Sande, The London Community Gospel Choir, all wanted to be involved.’
Keeping the Faith: Paloma caught the eye in a leopard print skirt as she made hr way inside
Unlikely collaborators: James Blunt (L) and Libertines star Karl Barat (R) have joined forces for the fundraising single
Low key: Rita sported a loose fitting shirt and shorts for her hastily arranged recording session
Getting involved: Soul star Gregory Porter (L) and Britain’s Got Talent winner Tokio Myers (R) were amongst those eager to help following the devastating blaze
Let’s do this: Paloma Faith posed for photos before making her way inside the studio
Speaking outside the studio, collaborator Paloma Faith admitted she was skeptical of the £5 million emergency fund generated by Prime Minister Teresa May for victims of the Grenfell tragedy.
‘I’m just really disappointed in the Government’s response to it,’ she told News & Star. ‘I don’t think £5 million is going to touch the sides, and I don’t think it even amounts to the amount of compensation that people deserve.
‘They’ve not lost just their families, they’ve lost their neighbours, they’ve lost their community, everything they know.
‘The mind boggles how (the Government) can find any redemption for doing that.’
Strong words: Speaking outside the studio, collaborator Paloma Faith admitted she was skeptical of the £5 million emergency fund generated by Prime Minister Teresa May for victims of the Grenfell tragedy
She’s got The X Factor: Former talent show winner Leona gave fans a wave as she prepared to record vocals for the track
Simon Cowell originally announced plans help victims of the tragedy in a series of tweets, posted on Thursday evening.
Taking to Twitter to reveal his plans, the X Factor boss wrote: ‘I am watching the footage of the Grenfell Tower fire in London. Heartbreaking.
‘We hope to confirm a record tomorrow which will raise some money for the many people affected by this tragedy. Making calls tonight.’
On Friday morning he explained to Good Morning Britain that to not help in his position would be ‘appalling’.
Busy day: Simon Cowell has pulled together some of the UK’s biggest musical acts to collaborate on a fundraising single for the victims of the Grenfell Tower blaze
Getting involved: One Direction star Liam Paye is amongst those participating in the project
She’s got The X Factor: Louisa Johnson is also lending her voice to the forthcoming single
Speaking to GMB via telephone, he said: ‘I was watching the news and then I drove up to see the building which is only round the corner from me. I’ve seen a lot of bad things, and there, you know, not far away from where I was sitting, I just… it really dawned on you, honestly, it sent chills through me.’
‘Seeing the building it made a big impact. I think the thing that really hit home to me was when I was seeing that wall and I saw those messages and then when I saw how the residents immediately turned up with water and clothes and offers of shelter and everything else and that’s when I thought, I’m not just going to sit here and do nothing.’
‘For me in my position, not to do something would be appalling. So I wrote to all the record label heads and I basically said let’s all work together, there’s a bigger cause here.’
Helping out: Cowell originally announced plans help victims of the tragedy in a series of tweets, posted on Thursday evening
Moved: The music mogul, 57, confirmed he will release the fundraising track after watching harrowing news coverage of the disaster
‘[What] I’m hoping will happen with the record is that it pricks a few people’s consciousness and then other people decide to do something else, because I think we can do more in addition to just the record. That’s my plan.’
Cowell added that the plan is already in motion, with the music mogul hoping to record the single this weekend.
‘We will record it hopefully and finish it Sunday, latest Monday. We already started to get a lot of people calling in saying, ‘of course we would love to do it’. People who can’t make it physically to the studio, we can record their vocals wherever they are in the world if they want to be involved,’ he explained.
Tragedy: The blaze at Grenfell Tower in White City, west London has so far has claimed 30 lives and injured dozens more
‘The song is important because it obviously has to be sincere. It has to have the right message, and most importantly, for me, it has to mean something to the people affected by what happened. I do genuinely believe this will make a difference.’
His announcement comes after an emotional Adele was seen assisting residents outside Grenfell Tower in White City, west London.
The award winning singer made an appearance at the site at about 1am on Thursday morning and stayed for 15 minutes, according to eye-witness Tom Maughan.
He told Associated Press: ‘She was so nice. She was going around talking to people. She tried to keep it on the low but I shouted “Adele!” and she said “No, it’s not me”. It was about 1am, she came with her husband.
‘She didn’t have any security with her, it was a bit surprising. She wasn’t hiding her face.’
Assistance: His announcement comes after an emotional Adele was seen assisting residents outside the devastated tower block
With a number of stars donating to the fund and promoting the services offered to victims, Adele is in a minority in actually heading to the site to support those present.
Rita Ora was also pictured carrying water and supplies around the site in White City, west London, on Wednesday as she worked tirelessly into the night to provide support for victims of the tragedy.
Joined by a group of friends, the musician seemed to be battling with her emotions as she visited the site less than 24 hours after the horrifying blaze.
Here to help: Rita Ora was also pictured carrying water and supplies around the site on Wednesday as she worked tirelessly into the night to provide support for victims of the tragedy
Rita was born in Kosovo before her parents – a psychiatrist mother and pub landlord father – fled the country and moved to the UK when Rita was just one.
She has always been proud of her London roots, growing up around Earls Court, before later moving to Kensal Rise – a stone’s throw away from White City, where the blaze took place.
The fire that swept through the 27-storey tower block in just 15 minutes after a faulty fridge exploded could be one of the worst in British history amid fears nobody on its top three floors survived.