Coventry students release charity single to stop MS

The Key are 5 music students from Coventry who've spent their final year making an amazing song and video to help stop MS. We caught up with them over email to find out who they are and why they chose to support us.

Why did you form The Key?

We formed the Key as part of our BTEC level 3 course in Music at Caludon Castle School in Coventry. The last task of the course is to write, record, promote and release a charity single. So even when we were in year 7 we knew this was going to be our final project.

Our best friend Jaisha supported her dad Vinoj with MS. So for us this project was always going to be about supporting the MS Society.

Five members of teenage band The Key on an ice rink with their arms around each other wearing MS Society T shirts

Who's who in the band?

Jessie Paprotny is the band's lead vocalist and the the composer and lyricist of 'Stronger Together'. She has a passion for writing and performing and wants to continue into her future

Owen Ashby is the Key's bassist, a natural talent and most importantly very funny! Owen supplied us with many a laugh throughout the project.

Keely Pickard is our keyboard player. She also sings harmonies that really pull the song together and elevate the sound. 

Samantha Stoney is the band's drummer, although normally she's a singer. Sam actually hasn't played the drums for very long and I think you would agree she does an amazing job on the track!

Lastly we have Salmaan Shah, The Key's guitarist. He is a very talented musician. He may be quiet, but he brings a sense of rock and roll to the band that we love.

Vinoj laughing to camera sitting in his wheelchair at a birthday party

Tell us about Vinoj and Jaisha's family’s journey with MS?

Vinoj was the father of one of our best friends Jaisha. As a friendship group we had to support Jaisha through difficult times, and emotionally we are still all there for her now. Knowing what she went through, the MS Society seemed like a perfect charity to choose to support.

Jaisha and her family are very excited about the project and how it will raise the profile of the MS Society. They are fully behind us and see it as a great tribute to Vinoj.

Five members of teenage band The Key perform their song on ice with a hockey team behind them

Your video looks so much fun, tell us about it?

We needed to have the best video we could to promote the single. Luckily for us Planet Ice, which is very close to us are national sponsors for the MS Society in 2020.

Coventry Blaze professional Ice Hockey team are based at Planet Ice and when they heard about the project, they were more than happy to support a great school and a fantastic charity working together.

Professional ice skater Stephanie Cameron and two of her students gave us all skating tips before showing us her signature moves. Unfortunately, this didn't help Salmaan, who spent most of his time falling over.

Looking back, shooting some scenes at an ice rink required more previous skating experience than we anticipated!

What were the challenges of launching a single in lockdown?

Originally our plan was to have a launch gig in a large venue, selling tickets to make more money for the charity. Every charity single is launched this way at Caludon, it's always a sell out and gets hundreds of staff, parents and relatives together to have a great time for a good cause. Unfortunately this never happened because of COVID-19. So we've had to work remotely from home, messaging and having zoom meetings regularly.

Not going to lie, we are gutted we won’t get the chance to live launch the track in front of a packed room of friends, family and staff.

What's next for The Key? Will you stay in touch?

In September, we will all be doing different things, going to University, starting apprenticeships, we will stay in touch with each other though. This has been a wonderful way to finish our time at school and we're so pleased to have raised money and awareness for the charity. 

The video will be online forever so we will always have that to look back on and reminisce the time we’ve spent together.

You can support The Key on their JustGiving page or stream their track on Spotify.


Add Stronger Together to your Spotify playlist