Actress and singer Rita Wilson has teamed up with veteran hip-hop act Naughty By Nature for a remix of the group’s 1992 classic “Hip Hop Hooray,” via Tommy Boy Music, and available exclusively on YouTube today. The single will be released widely on all digital/streaming platforms this Friday, April 10, with profits from the recording will be donated to the MusiCares Foundation Inc. COVID-19 Relief Fund to help those in the music community affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Wilson and her husband Tom Hanks revealed last month that they had contracted the disease and were quarantined in Australia, but were given a clean bill of health and returned to the U.S. at the end of March.
According to the announcement, the tongue-in-cheek remix of the multi-platinum hit was born out of a set of unexpected circumstances. Wilson explains, “’Hip Hop Hooray’ is like modern day Shakespeare. I originally learned the song for one of the most fun roles I ever played in the film ‘Boy Genius.’ It took me a month to learn because it’s so complex and nuanced; it was like training for a marathon. The rhythms and tempos are so unique and creative. When I was quarantined and recovering from COVID-19 I wanted to see if I still remembered it, kind of like a brain exercise. To my surprise I did. I thought it would be fun to put it on my Instagram to show people I was doing okay and to make them smile. When Naughty By Nature commented about it, I couldn’t believe it. What a joy to be doing this remix with legends of the Hip-Hop world. I’m forever grateful for their generosity of spirit and for being able to raise money together for MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund.”
Naughty By Nature adds, “We are honored to have Rita Wilson recite our song. We were totally shocked she could rap the verses so well. We were aware she contracted COVID-19, and was quarantined along with her husband Tom. The next thing we know, everyone began to inbox us her Instagram. We are honored to be part of the remix of our classic song to raise awareness and help fight the coronavirus. Thanks again to Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks for embracing us, and for helping us take the unexpected viral moment further for such a great cause.”
Last month, MusiCares, the Recording Academy’s charitable foundation, established the COVID-19 Relief Fund with a $2 million donation to help people in the music industry affected by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak and subsequent cancellation of thousands of music events.
According to the announcement, the fund, administered through MusiCares, will be used to directly support those in the music community with the greatest need. To establish the fund, both the Recording Academy and MusiCares have contributed an initial donation of $1 million each, totaling $2 million. Additionally, all Recording Academy Chapters have committed to fundraising in their local communities. Further updates and announcements will be made in the coming days.
Since it was founded in 1989, MusiCares has distributed more than $60 million to musicians and music people in need.
If you wish to support its efforts to assist music people in need, visit: https://www.grammy.com/MusiCares/CoronavirusReliefFund
If you are a member of the music industry in need of assistance, visit: musicares.org.