Belfast Telegraph

Which musicians have contributed covers to John Lewis Christmas adverts?

Ellie Goulding, Elbow and Lily Allen are among the stars who have featured in the festive series.

Ellie Goulding and Dan Smith have both sung soundtracks for the John Lewis adverts (PA)
Ellie Goulding and Dan Smith have both sung soundtracks for the John Lewis adverts (PA)

By Alex Green, PA Entertainment Reporter

Dan Smith from the band Bastille is the latest star to lend their voice to John Lewis’s annual Christmas advert.

His cover of REO Speedwagon’s 1984 power ballad Can’t Fight This Feeling eschews Bastille’s stadium-sized sounds in favour of festive bells and soft piano.

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Dan Smith of Bastille (Matt Crossick/PA)

Smith is not the first musician to rise to the occasion with a novel take on a classic song.

Here we look at the best festival John Lewis cover songs since the tradition began in 2008.

– Ellie Goulding covers Sir Elton John’s Your Song (2010)

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Ellie Goulding after her marriage to Caspar Jopling earlier this year (James Hardisty/PA)

Goulding’s distinctive voice and the track’s minimalist arrangement made this cover of Sir Elton and Bernie Taupin’s well-loved ballad an instant success.

Eight years later, in 2018, Sir Elton himself appeared in the retailer’s Christmas advert, called The Boy And The Piano, which offered up a festive-themed retrospective of the musician’s career.

– Lily Allen covers Keane’s Somewhere Only We Know (2013)

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Lily Allen (Ian West/PA)

The Smile hit-maker’s emotive version of rock band Keane’s 2003 hit went straight to number one upon release, the second John Lewis advert song to have done so.

However, its success was overshadowed by comments Allen subsequently made in an interview with Vulture.

She claimed she had been “bullied” into recording the song by her record label, and that she had not received any monetary gain from the single.

The 2013 campaign featured an array of woodland animals in a classical Disney-style setting.

– Tom Odell covers The Beatles’ Real Love (2014)

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Tom Odell on The Graham Norton Show (Isbael Infantes/PA)

Fresh from topping the charts with his debut album Long Way Down, the West Sussex singer-songwriter delivered another chart success with his cover of The Beatles song.

One of the Fab Four’s lesser known tracks, his version of Real Love peaked at number seven in the UK singles chart.

His gravelly vocals accompanied the tale of Monty, the imaginary friend created by a boy whose favourite toy is a stuffed penguin.

– Aurora covers Half The World Away by Oasis (2015)

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Andy Bell, Noel Gallagher and Gem Archer from Oasis (Ian West/PA)

Norwegian singer Aurora was chosen to cover Oasis’s Half The World Away, a cult 1994 B-side much loved by fans of the band.

2015’s The Man On The Moon advert showed a young girl who spots a lonely old man on the moon and decides to send him a telescope to give him a connection to Earth.

The partnership with Age UK had the tagline: “Show someone they’re loved this Christmas.”

However, Aurora’s offering failed to boost her profile in the UK.

– Elbow cover Golden Slumbers by The Beatles (2017)

The Mancunian band’s melancholic offering soundtracked the friendship between a seven-year-old boy and his imaginary monster under the bed, Moz.

Moz eventually realises that their late nights must end when he sees the toll they are taking on Joe. Joe wakes on Christmas morning to find a clumsily wrapped present of a night light under the tree.

PA

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