In December 2020, the Oh Yeah Music Centre, a registered music charity in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter, was gifted one of only fifty limited edition acetates (number 44), hand-cut at Abbey Road Studios, of the 2020 Ultimate Mix of Happy Xmas (War Is Over) by John Lennon & Yoko Ono – first released fifty years ago, in December 1971.
The gift came with the instruction from Sean Ono Lennon ‘to sell, auction, raise money to help your charity or to fund your Christmas party’. The Oh Yeah Music Centre has been an ‘open doors to music’ since 2007 so it was decided that the most fitting way to honour this incredible gift was to reinvest it in a programme of support for emerging talents.
“We are incredibly grateful and excited to make available to the public a piece of iconic music history. The best part about it is that every single person who enters the raffle to win the collectible vinyl will be doing their part to support future creative generations – which cuts to the core of what Oh Yeah is all about” – Charlene Hegarty, Talent Development Manager
100% of the proceeds from the raffle will go towards ‘The Carol Clerk Bursary’ supported by Oh Yeah Music Centre and in partnership with Dig With It Magazine. By entering the raffle to win this extremely rare and collectible item you are also contributing to the future of representative music journalism in Northern Ireland for female and non-binary writers.
The ‘Carol Clerk Bursary’ is named in honour of a trailblazing music writer from Belfast. Carol wrote her first story for Melody Maker in 1974 when she was still at school (‘Bombs, Boredom and No Bands’). Eventually she became News Editor of Melody Maker and also wrote respected books on The Pogues, The Damned and Ozzy Osbourne.
The bursary was launched with the blessing of her daughter Eve earlier this year.
Sadly, Carol died of cancer in 2010, aged 55.
With a great stroke of serendipity, Carol Clerk was an acquaintance of Yoko Ono. You can read a conversation between Carol and Yoko here
The 12” vinyl record is stickered and numbered out of 50 and includes a machine printed signature from Yoko, making them incredibly collectible. Public auctions via eBay have fetched £5,000+.