Bristol docker dedicates NHS charity single to key worker “saviours and grafters”

Published: Thursday 7th May 2020

A Bristol Port docker is releasing a charity single for the NHS in tribute to key worker “saviours and grafters”.

Spencer Flay operates cranes at the Port but also has a growing fanbase around the world as a singer songwriter.

His new song, called Key Workers, is dedicated to everyone on the frontline of the Covid-19 pandemic – from doctors and nurses, to paramedics, teachers, delivery drivers and dockers on the quay wall.

It will be launched on BBC Radio Bristol on Thursday night – after the Clap for Carers – and is available to download and stream from Friday, with all profits going to the NHS and Southmead Charity Hospital.

Spencer said: “I started working on this when lockdown started. I’ve always been inspired by the NHS and I just felt it was right to do a song to help support the NHS and key workers who are pulling us through this current time. I wanted to show some love to all of them, and also to raise money for those on the frontline of this pandemic. I’m happy with how the song came together and hope others enjoy it too.”

Known at the docks as the “Port’s own musician”, Spencer’s profile on social media says “I write songs up cranes”. Having lived on the Portway all his life and worked at the docks for the past 14 years, he started playing the ukulele seven years ago, and it was in the isolation of his sound proof crane cab – 30m above sea level – that he first found the confidence to compose and practice songs during downtime at work.

The Port, which has remained open and operational throughout the crisis, also provided some inspiration for his new song. “Seeing all my Docker mates coming into work, continuing to graft and knowing we are providing vital supplies to the nation has also been a great inspiration.”

Spencer’s talents beyond the crane cabin have started to get wider recognition. Last year, on Spotify alone, his songs were streamed more than 31,000 times by over 20,000 listeners from 58 countries worldwide. He has featured on local and regional radio stations, hosts livestream concerts on Facebook, and recently had the honour of his version of the Wayne Wonder song No Letting Go being the first dance at a happy couple’s wedding – in America.

Key workers will be available to download and stream from midnight on Friday 8th May on iTunes and Spotify. Spencer gave thanks to ADSRecords for mixing and mastering and the Bristol Port Company for support and funding towards his latest release. He is also playing on Facebook Live at 20.00 on Saturday 9th May, again in aid of Southmead Hospital Charity/North Bristol NHS Trust and NHS Charities Together.