Keane-Wallis Bennett song in iTunes top 40

Some of the members of Keane's Girls. Picture: Alex Hewitt
Some of the members of Keane's Girls. Picture: Alex Hewitt
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Two groups of city pupils have launched an assault on the festive charts.

A charity single in memory of tragic schoolgirl Keane Wallis-Bennett penned by her friends shortly after her death has been ranked in the iTunes top 40 since it was released earlier this month.

And now it has been joined by a feel-good nostaglic album featuring songs chosen by Scotland’s favourite cartoon scamp, Oor Wullie – with both proving to be surprise hits, taking the charts by storm and selling thousands of copies ­between them in stores and online.

Oor Wullie Sing-a-long Favourites, created with help from Bonaly Primary School pupils, has earned a silver music recording sales certification after selling more than 60,000 copies despite having virtually no radio air time.

The 51-track double album has also rocketed to number 15 in the music for children section of the Amazon Best Sellers and is understood to be vying for the number one in HMV on Princes Street.

Meanwhile, Keane’s Song, written by her friends with help from Liberton High School chaplaincy, has made it to number 27 on iTunes and has also reached number 21 in the BBC Indie Singles Chart.

Gordon Campbell of The Music Kitchen, the Causewayside company behind the Oor Wullie CD, said the level of the album’s success had come as a surprise. He said: “In the UK’s national compilation chart it was in the 100 best-sellers but in Scotland it was easily in the top ten in some places.”

“I’m very taken aback. I hoped it would do well but it has exceeded all expectations.

“It’s quite incredible when you consider that it is battling it out with albums like That’s What I Call Music for number one, and we are just a small company based in Edinburgh.”

The selection, which is proving popular with young and old alike, includes songs such as Skinny Malinky Long Legs, Ye Cannae Shove Yer Granny Aff A Bus and a rousing version of The Proclaimers’ hit I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles).

The poignant three-minute anthem by Keane’s Girls, 
written shortly after Keane’s death at Liberton High School on April 1, will raise thousands of pounds for a memorial garden in the campus.

School chaplain David McNeish, probationer minister, helped them to compose the song when Liberton Northfield church was opened up for school pupils to have somewhere to reflect on the tragedy.

He said: “We are delighted and so ­grateful that it’s been of interest. All of the girls are buzzing at ­having made the charts.

That was the icing on the cake for all the hard work.”

The song received interest from as far afield as ­Australia, Thailand and Singapore after it was played on Black ­Diamond FM.

john.connell@edinburghnews.com