Danny O’ Donoghue reveals The Script’s biggest song was inspired by the Classic FM Hall of Fame

18 March 2024, 15:48

Danny O'Donoghue of The Script reveals hit song ‘Hall of Fame’ inspiration
Danny O'Donoghue of The Script reveals hit song ‘Hall of Fame’ inspiration. Picture: Getty / Matt Crossick for Classic FM Live

By Maddy Shaw Roberts

Danny O’Donoghue wrote The Script’s ‘Hall of Fame’ after listening to the radio on his way to the recording studio – and coming across the Classic FM Hall of Fame Hour!

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“Standing in the hall of fame, and the world’s gonna know your name, ‘cause you burn with the brightest flame” – so goes Irish band The Script’s biggest smash hit ‘Hall of Fame’, which has had over a billion streams to date.

Now, as part of a series of Instagram videos about the inspiration and stories behind their biggest songs, lead singer Danny O’Donoghue has credited the group’s motivational anthem to Classic FM’s morning programme, The Classic FM Hall of Fame Hour.

The Classic FM Hall of Fame is one of our longest running radio features. It contains the 300 pieces of classical music voted for by the public every year, and played out across the Easter weekend.

Released in 2012 from The Script’s third studio album, ‘Hall of Fame’ was born from Danny’s ‘quiet time’ in the morning. He turned on the radio for some music to help him get in the compositional zone, and inspiration struck.

“When I’m on my way to the studio, I hate outside influence,” Danny revealed in the video (watch below).

“So instead of listening to music with lyrics on it, I end up turning on Classic FM.

“So I turned it on, and I saw this hour they have called The Hall of Fame Hour,” Danny continued.

“And I got so inspired by the title, because I had never heard a song that mentioned the hall of fame – for policemen, firemen, nurses, doctors, people of the community. And I just felt that there’s a song that needs to be written.

“I got to the studio, and my producer friend Jimbo just turned around and he’s like, I’ve got this piano riff. He played the piano riff and I got so inspired and I just said ‘hand me the mic’.”

‘Hall of Fame’, which is all about following your dreams and having an impact on the world, is a piano-driven track with a soaring, earworm of a chorus that can’t help but stick in your head.

Danny added: “We recorded the idea for the chorus and the verse in about 15 minutes, and that was the majority of the song and it’s crazy to go from just my quiet time in the morning, to a billion streams, and what can happen in between that.”

Just like some of the anthems you might hear in the Classic FM Hall of Fame, like Handel’s great Zadok the Priest, The Script’s ‘Hall of Fame’ has an immense, stadium-sized chorus on the track production – a sound that has become integral to the band’s wide appeal and musical success.

Read more: Epic orchestral flashmob of Handel’s ‘Zadok the Priest’ in a supermarket

The Script - Hall of Fame (Official Video) ft. will.i.am

On top of the song’s billion streams, the music video on YouTube starring will.i.am has over 500 million views. Alongside the music, the video spotlights vignettes of boxers and ballerinas failing, falling down, sweating through the pain, and ultimately picking themselves back up, to one day stand in the ‘Hall of Fame’.

It’s a song that has inspired and reached people across the world for more than a decade. But the story behind it has only just come out.

The Classic FM Hall of Fame Hour, which is on every morning at 9am, is an introduction to classical music’s biggest hits, from favourite concertos to hit opera tunes and film scores.

And of course, over two decades since it launched, it’s still going strong – much like the the hit song it inspired...

Listen to The Classic FM Hall of Fame Hour live at 9am every day with Dan Walker on weekdays and Tim Lihoreau on weekends, or on Catch Up on Global Player.

How to Listen