Sting's Catchy New Song Explains the Chain Reaction of Hiring People With Down Syndrome

A call for workplace inclusivity

"The Baker hired Simone
and everybody saw
that she could do the job."

So begins "The Hiring Chain," a jaunty, piano-based tune recorded by Sting for World Down Syndrome Day on March 21.

That track drives a short film from Italian nonprofit CoorDown, which shows all sorts of employers welcoming young people with Down syndrome into the working world:

THE HIRING CHAIN performed by STING | World Down Syndrome Day 2021

New York agency Small developed the campaign based on a dinner conversation its executives had some years ago with Martina Fuga, CoorDown's communications lead.

"She told us that by hiring someone with Down syndrome, employers can actually start a virtuous chain: the more that people with Down syndrome are seen in a work environment, the more they'll be recognized as valuable employees, and the more they'll be hired," recalls Luca Pannese, co-founder and executive creative director of Small. "Our minds went to those nursery rhyme songs describing chain effects, so we thought: Why don't we tell the whole story by writing an original song ourselves?"

Working with Stabbiolo Music, the team drew on their love of classic pop.

"We grew up listening to Sting and the Police, and when composing the song, we thought that this would be perfect for the unique voice of our teenage hero," says Luca Lorenzini, also a co-founder and ECD at Small.

A mutual acquaintance brought the project to Sting, who coincidentally resides near Lorenzini's hometown in Tuscany, and the artist readily agreed to lend his pipes to the project.

"We couldn't believe it. Maybe it was just meant to be," Lorenzini says. "We sent his team the lyrics and the backing track and one week later, we received the recording of his vocals—perfect in every respect. I must confess that when I first heard his voice, I cried. My first concert ever was a Sting concert in Rome in 1993. And having him singing a song we composed, and for one of the clients who's closest to our heart, was beyond the imaginable."

Sting delivers a vibrant performance, with warmth and enthusiasm bubbling through each verse. Indiana Productions director Rich Lee shot the video a year ago in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, just before European lockdowns began.

"So, together with the client, we decided to postpone the launch of the campaign," Pannese says. "Comprehensively, everyone's attention was focused on the pandemic, and out of respect we decided to put the campaign in a drawer and wait for 2021."

The song and video point to hiringchain.org, a platform Small created to assist businesses interested in hiring people with Down syndrome. Support includes promotion through LinkedIn, and on Sting's social feeds.

You can check out the complete lyrics below:

THE HIRING CHAIN

The Baker hired Simone
and everybody saw
that she could do the job.

The Lawyer went to the Baker
and saw Simone at work.

The Lawyer hired John
because the Baker hired Simone
the Baker hired Simone.

The Dentist went to the Lawyer
and saw John at work.
The Dentist hired Sophia
because the Lawyer hired John
because the Baker hired Simone
the Baker hired Simone.

The Farmer went to the Dentist
and saw Sophia at work.
The Farmer hired Kate
because the Dentist hired Sophia
because the Lawyer hired John
because the Baker hired Simone
the Baker hired Simone.

The Barber went to the Farmer
and saw Kate at work.

The Barber hired Paul
because the Farmer hired Kate
because the Dentist hired Sophia
because the Lawyer hired John
because the Baker hired Simone
the Baker hired Simone.

The Baker went to the Barber
and saw Paul at work
he didn't have a clue
but it was thanks to his first move
that…

The Barber hired Paul
because the Farmer hired Kate
because the Dentist hired Sophia
because the Lawyer hired John
because the Baker hired Simone
the Baker hired Simone
the Baker hired Simone.

CREDITS

Vocals: Sting
Sting's Vocals Produced by Martin Kierszenbaum and Edited by Tony Lake
Sting appears courtesy of Cherrytree/A&M Records
Agency: SMALL
Executive Creative Directors: Luca Pannese, Luca Lorenzini
Original Music: Alessandro Cristofori and Diego Perugini for Stabbiolo Music
Production Company: Indiana Production
Director: Rich Lee
DP and Colorist: Christopher Probst, ASC
Executive Producer: Karim Bartoletti
Senior Producer: Silvia Bergamaschi
Production manager: Pablo Casula
Editor: Luca Angeleri
Post Production: Drive Studios
EP Drive Studios: Justin Diener
EP Drive Studios: Ned Brown
Creative Supervisor Drive Studios: Louise Lee
Staff Artist Drive Studios: Anika Morris
Online Editor Drive Studios: Ben Thornburg
Addl Compositor Drive Studios: Silswarup Patel
Studio Coordinator Drive Studios: Leah Fuentes
Website: Adoratorio Studio and Niccolò Miranda

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