Before Christopher Bailey leaves Burberry in March 2018, we recall 5 of our favourite music moments with the fashion brand
After 17 years with Burberry, president and chief creative officer Christopher Bailey will step down from the board on 31 March 2018. Leaving behind a heritage brand — founded in 1856 — that often aligns itself with the 'It' Brit crowd, Bailey's tenure has been credited with refreshing the storied fashion house. One of the things Burberry has done right? Championing British music. No other brand has aligned the artistry of fashion and music quite as seamlessly as Burberry. Here's how.
1. Establishing Burberry Acoustic Founded in 2010, Burberry Acoustic was a programme that's active in promoting British musicians. The brand filmed under-the-radar and well-known names in beautiful locations around England, including St James' Church in Islington, Reading Concert Hall and Tower Bridge in London. Notable names include James Bay performing 'Let Me Go' in his native Brighton, where he played above a street he used to busk at. Burberry also took the series to China, where they filmed Keane performing 'Somewhere Only We Know' on the Great Wall of China. Musicians are decked out in Burberry gear of course, performing in stores and launches around the globe — Georgie and White Lies were two British names brought to Singapore by Burberry.
2. Paloma Faith's live performance of 'Only Love Can Hurt Like This' Paloma Faith has Bailey to thank for what's considered to be one of the best live versions of her hit, 'Only Love Can Hurt Like This'. The heart-wrenching number closed the Autumn Winter 2014 show at Kensington Gardens, which showcased a collection inspired by British writers such as Vanessa Bell and Virginia Woolf. The finale was notably spectacular with the models parading in monogrammed shawls, the flow of that garment subtly swaying in synchronisation with Faith's piano-led number.
3. The collaboration between Apple Music and Burberry Considered as the Simon Cowell of fashion, it's no surprise that Burberry was the first non-music and non-editorial branded channel by Apple Music. Musicians have Bailey to thank for his curation — before making it big, Jake Bugg, James Bay and George Ezra were early recruits scouted by Bailey. Playlists by the brand include 'Emerging British Talent', 'From The Burberry Runway' and 'Christopher Bailey's Music Monday'.
4. Celebrating Alison Moyet's best hits "I have an iTunes file that is for potential show music," said Bailey in an interview. "Whenever I listen to something or remember something that I like, I put it into that file." One of them's Alison Moyet, an '80s star who started out in punk bands before forming Yazoo with Vince Clark, then going solo. When Bailey suggested her name to his team, some of them reportedly didn't even know who Moyet was. "She felt to me in those days what Adele does to me today in some ways," lamented Bailey. At Burberry's Spring/Summer 2016 womenswear show, Moyet performed 'All Cried Out', 'When I Was Your Girl', 'Whispering Your Name' and 'Only You'.
5. The tribute to David Bowie's passing Burberry's Autumn/Winter 2016 menswear show came at an unfortunate time — the morning where the world learned of David Bowie's passing. Bailey played Bowie's 'Where Are We Now' for guests as they arrived, and switched up the make-up so that selected models had glittered tear streaks down their eyes. Even model Hayett McCarthy walked the catwalk with "BOWIE" written across her palms.