This collaboration produced for the Inter-Creative Collaborations Project comes courtesy of the talents of musician, Paul Kelly and filmmaker Adam J Smith. The song that Paul has chosen is Run With Us, the end theme to cult 80’s Canadian cartoon series, The Raccoons, which was originally performed by the tune’s co-writer, Steve Lunt during the cartoon’s first series then more familiarly by Lisa Lougheed until the show ended in 1992.
Run With Us Lead vocals and guitar – Paul Kelly (The Martial Arts) Guitar – Sean Biggerstaff Backing vocals – Aylish McFarlane and Sean Biggerstaff Mixed and mastered by Sam Smith of Green Door Studio Film: Adam J Smith (The Hector Collectors)
Some thoughts on the song choice from Paul:
“Like most people, I remember ‘Run With Us’ as the end credits song from the 1980s cartoon, The Raccoons. Although the show’s first series used an earlier version sung by co-writer Steve Lunt, it was soon replaced by Lisa Lougheed’s version which was released as a single in 1987. Somehow it did not manage to become a hit anywhere, except for the lower reaches of the Canadian chart, although I am not surprised to discover that it is remembered with extreme fondness everywhere I have looked. Although I haven’t watched it in at least 30 years or more, I was a fan of the show around the ages of 6 and 7 and was always very taken with this surprisingly intense and enduring song, even if you are extremely unlikely to hear it on the radio or find it on streaming services.
Despite commercially flying under the radar, ‘Run With Us’ must be buried in the memories of millions of thirty to fortysomethings who tuned into the show across its seven-year run. I have rediscovered it in recent years and always loved playing it as a DJ, where I got to observe the listeners’ reaction to the chorus when they finally recognise what the naggingly familiar song is. It always appeared to me that ‘Run With Us’ deserved to be an enormous international hit, enough to give something like ‘Love Is A Battlefield’ a run for its money.
When it was suggested I record a cover version for the Inter-Creative Collaborations project, it barely took me five seconds to decide I wanted to record a version of ‘Run With Us’. It always struck me that the lyrics read more like an arm of support toward someone who is struggling than the mere scope of The Racoons cartoon. For my interpretation, I did not want to mess too much with the brilliant arrangement of the classic version, although I wanted to try and channel the dark synth stylings often used by the likes of Molly Nilsson and John Maus. To assist with the recording, I asked Sean Biggerstaff to play the guitar parts and also to provide backing vocals, on which he was joined by Aylish McFarlane. Sam Smith of Green Door studio mixed and mastered the track remotely. I enjoyed putting it together and I hope it helps trigger some fond memories for those of a certain age.
Adam J Smith gives his thoughts on his vision for Paul’s song choice:
“Run With Us was the theme to an 80s cartoon series that I recall through a 30-35 year haze of childhood nostalgia. This video is an attempt to offer an appropriate visual complement to those kinds of memories (and also to honour the stirring heroic message of the song) by digging up some hopelessly obscure and forgotten 80s construction toys called ‘Linkits’ and making them have adventures once more.”
As all the creatives involved have given of their time and incredible talent freely, we decided it would be appropriate to release the songs (for FREE download) on our Bandcamp page but ask anyone who downloads the tracks to please consider a donation to the Tiny Changes charity which was set up by the family of Scott Hutchison who was a founding member of Frightened Rabbit. Scott took his own life after years of battling with mental health issues. The family felt compelled to set up Tiny Changes as a mechanism to support projects which positively impact on young people’s mental health.