Pet Shop Boys, The Magic Numbers, The Guillemots, Teddy Thompson and more will all be performing on the night.
And Tom secured their agreement through a novel and surprisingly complicated means.
“We actually sent hand-written letters out to people,” he revealed. “That was a bit of a challenge because I discovered I’d actually lost the ability to write by hand.
“Obviously some people said no, mainly because they were on tour, but in the main people said yes. We were very flattered with the response.
“I think Warchild has had an incredible effect on music. But I also think, especially at this point in time, given the mess and controversy that surrounds Britain’s involvement in Iraq, that a lot of people feel strongly that it would be nice to do something positive.
“It’s definitely gathered momentum very quickly.”
Warchild managing director MARK WADDINGTON adds: “What we’re using this show for is to gain as wide an audience as we can for the Iraq appeal. People can donate money by texting child to 88818 and people can also pledge their support on the website www.warchildiraqappeal.com.”
Pet Shop Boys NEIL TENNANT and CHRIS LOWE have a special significance for the trio.
“Without them there would be no Keane,” states Richard. “They’re the band that made (songwriter) Tim first listen to music. All of the people on the bill we admire hugely.”
“I don’t feel like it’s a headline gig,” adds Tom. “I like to think of it as Keane presents. We just want to bring all these people together. It’s wonderful how all these musicians are converging in a selfless way to do something.
“We feel we’re part of a bigger picture when it comes to this show. In some ways I’m quite terrified about having to introduce all these people and I hope that we do our best and don’t make an embarrassment of ourselves.”
The single itself, The Night Sky, marks a radical departure in terms of Keane’s songwriting. It’s written from the perspective of a small child affected by conflict.
Tom explains: “Obviously we, with western news programmes often see the reporter in front of a building with a bit of smoke in the distance and you don’t get a feel for what it must be like.
“The people who feel that sense of despair and fear the most must be the children who are in those war zones.
“That was something that really interest us and provided the germ for that song.”
The frontman sees himself following in the footsteps of global campaigners like BONO and BOB GELDOF
He adds: “A lot of bands have been scared off by some negative reactions there’ve been.
“Two of the biggest campaigners around are Bono and Bob Geldof and they consistently seem to come in for a lot of stick.
“As far as I’m concerned they’re doing unbelievably brilliant work and trying hard to battle against governments who basically lie and cheat and don’t fulfil their promises.
“Whether it’s tunnel vision I just see the goal, which is raising money for Warchild and having a huge influence on many lives.”
By CARL STROUD
Published: 24 Oct 2007,