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Band Aid – Do They Know It's Christmas lyrics

[Chris Martin:]
It's Christmas time, there's no need to be afraid
At Christmas time, we let in light and we banish shade

And in our world of plenty we can spread a smile of joy
Throw your arms around the world at Christmas time

[Robbie Williams:]
But say a prayer, Pray for the other ones
At Christmas time it's hard, but when you're having fun

There's a world outside your window
And it's a world of dread and fear

[Fran Healy:]
Where the only water flowing

[Fran Healy & Sugarbabes:]
Is the bitter sting of tears

[Fran Healy & Justin Hawkins:]
And the Christmas bells that ring there are the clanging chimes of doom

Well tonight thank God it's them instead of you

[Will Young & Jamelia:]
And there won't be snow in Africa this Christmas time
The greatest gift they'll get this year is life

[Ms Dynamite & Beverly Knight:]
Where nothing ever grows
No rain nor rivers flow

[Group of ten and Joss Stone:]
Do they know it's Christmas time at all?

[Tom Chaplin (Keane):]
Here's to you

[Justin Hawkins (Darkness):]
Raise a glass for everyone

[Dizzee Rascal:]
Spare a thought this yuletide for the deprived
If the table was turned would you survive

Here's to them

[Justin Hawkins (Darkness):]
Underneath that burning sun

[Dizzee Rascal:]
You ain't gotta feel guilt just selfless
Give a little help to the helpless

[Joss Stone & Justin Hawkins:]
Do they know it's Christmastime at all?

[Tom Chaplin:]
Feed the world

[Tom Chaplin & Chris Martin:]
Feed the world

[Tom Chaplin & Chris Martin & Sugababes:]
Feed the world

[Tom Chaplin & Chris Martin & Sugababes:]
Feed the world

[Everyone in full chorus line.]
Feed the world
Let them know it's Christmastime again - [repeated]

[Group of ten:]
Feed the world

[Everyone in full chorus line.]
Feed the world - [repeated to end]

[Joss Stone ]
[Ad libs over outro]

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  • u
    This song is about sparing a thought for those less fortunate than ourselves at Christmas time as captured in the lines "There's a world outside your window and it's a world of dread and fear" The next line talks about some people in the world do not have enough, if any water to drink, perhaps those living in drought conditions, "where the only water flowing is the bitter sting of tears".
    This song was written and used to raise millions for Band-Aid. How much money or aid that the third world received, is debatable to this day. There were pictures at the time, of Band-Aid recipients lining up for a famine-biscuit and cup of watered down porridge. As for the chorus line which asks "Do they know it's Christmas time at all?" Does any logical person think a starving African cares anything, if at all about the western society's culture of celebrating Christmas? This was a well written but contrived song that is supposed to make the middle class feel all warm and fuzzy. The fact that world poverty has increased since Band-Aid proves this song, though well intended missed its mark. It is a catchy song that still gets airplay each Christmas and has been re-recorded for 2014 release. Bob Geldof went on to receive a Knighthood from the Queen for this project.
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  • m
    Manturtle Gambone
    The lyrics and the tune represent a good mix of logic and intuition. Due to that mix, logical critics of a tune like this will take the line, "Do they know it's Christmas time at all?" way too literally.

    Music is an intuitive form of communication that relies on gut instinct and feeling. People aren't logically drawn to any tune. Music itself makes no logical sense at all. From a logical standpoint music is a complete waste of time. Logic and reason help people better understand how a well matched tune and lyrics draws them in. However, logic doesn't draw in the listener and that creates the opportunity for the logical folks to miss the intuitive use of metaphor in these lyrics.

    Logically, the question, "Do they know it's Christmas time?" is a stupid question. It's like asking if starving Africans have stockings hanging on their fireplaces and plates of cookies and milk out for Santa.

    From an intuitive standpoint the question is one of empathy. Do the starving Africans ever in their lives get to feel like you, the Christmas celebrating listener? Do they ever get to feel lucky and blessed with more than they need?

    "Christmas time" is used as a metaphor in a way that connects the listener to the Band Aid cause. The writers put their feelings and intuitive connections into song. They did it skillfully enough that it transmitted the same feelings to the listeners in a way that worked internationally.

    The U.S. spinoff "We are the World" pales in comparison.
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