Crossover classical singer Chris Mann first came to national attention in 2012 as a top four finalist on The Voice. But now he’s lending his voice to an important cause, national non-profit research organization the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund (CAF), with “Remember Me.” The charity single was co-written with world-renowned neuroscientist and Alzheimer’s researcher Dr. Rudy Tanzi, who also happens to be a keyboardist who jams with Joe Perry and Aerosmith on the side.
Yahoo Music’s Reality Rocks is proud to premiere the video for “Remember Me,” directed by Chris’s wife, Laura Mann, and starring Chris’s Phantom of the Opera touring company co-star, ballerina Christina Dooling.
“I had the vision of a single dancer, aged with Alzheimer’s, who would dance the age away throughout the course of the song and reveal her younger self, fighting her way out by the end,” Chris tells Yahoo Music. Laura explains: “I wanted her world, like her memory, to feel like a slate wiped clean: strange, unfamiliar, and blank. Visually, we mirror her emotional progression going from darkness and obscurity to clarity and illumination. As her age regresses, her awareness increases and we get to see her younger self crying out to the world, in a way that she no longer can.”
Explaining the inspiration behind the touching song, Chris says: “I met Dr. Rudy Tanzi while we both were filming segments for our PBS television specials. We hit it off about music and my family connection with Alzheimer’s, and thought we might make an interesting collaboration musically. There’s never been an anthem to raise awareness for Alzheimer’s, and we wanted to write one. A few months later, he sent me the beginnings of a song — a beautifully simple piano part that got me excited. I developed the music with my music director, Willy Beaman, and wrote the lyrics with my wife, Laura.
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“The story Laura and I wanted to tell was one from the perspective of the person with Alzheimer’s where they’re pleading to be remembered when they can’t remember themselves. It’s such a poignant message, whether you connect with Alzheimer’s or not. Everyone knows what it feels like to be forgotten. Everyone wants to fight to be remembered. Musically, I wanted to write the melody so I could really cry and plead while singing [the line] ‘remember me.’ It’s guttural and visceral, and I hope cuts to the heart of the listener.”
“Remember Me” will be the first single off Chris’s upcoming new album, but in the meantime, he’s asking fans to share the song’s message online. “I’ve always loved being active and in touch with my fans online. Campaign #RememberMe asks my fans and anyone who’s been touched by this disease to post pictures of themselves holding #RememberMe signs with their loved ones’ names on them along with the link to the video and the song on iTunes,” he says. “We want to spread the word to help raise awareness and funding to find a cure. One in three people die with Alzheimer’s, so odds are you know someone who’s dealing with this terrible disease.”
Check out any of the following links to help the cause and/or buy “Remember Me”: