NINE YEARS ON from the untimely death of Stephen Gately, who passed away from a congenital heart defect in 2009 at the age of 33, his surviving bandmates have announced that his vocals will be included on their upcoming farewell album.
Appearing on Good Morning Britain earlier today, Ronan, Keith, Shane and Mikey explained how poignant it was to learn that vocals Stephen recorded between 2002 and 2003 were available to use on their final album.
I Can Dream, which will feature on Thank You & Goodnight, is a reimagining of a solo track Stephen recorded prior to his death, with Shane explaining:
It actually dropped on our laps as a producer got in touch with us saying they have this stuff. He was moving his studio and he goes ‘I’ve got Stephen’s vocals on this record from ’03 or 02.’ He said, ‘Look, do you guys want it?’ and as it so happens we were making an album and we said ‘100% we’d love to have it.’
Acknowledging that the discovery of the vocals was emotional, the lads are understandably grateful to be able to include their late bandmate on their final musical endeavour.
Outlining the process, Mikey said:
It was an unusual experience, kind of bittersweet, the song was presented to us and it was about 20 years old or so, so the production style was kind of dated on it. So we took it into studio, stripped it down, built a whole new song about it, changing the sentiment from a love song to a nostalgia song, more about our journey through the last 25 years.
“It was great to have Stephen, his vocal, as the pinnacle, the core of that song,” he added.
The band, which formed in 1993 and sold 25 million records by 2013, are relieved that their 25-year journey will feature Stephen, with Shane saying:
It’s amazing to be able to wrap it all up with Stephen on there too. I think that was important for us.
Ronan, who shared a particularly close bond with Stephen, revealed that hearing the finished track for the first time was a poignant moment in the band’s story.
It was very emotional when we first heard it, especially having all of our voices next to Stephen’s after all this time.
Boyzone will be playing a farewell tour across the UK and Ireland next year.
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