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Page last updated at 15:24 GMT, Wednesday, 11 November 2009
Cathy's X-Factor Xmas challenge
Cathy Lesurf in the video for Christmas Time

A Nottinghamshire singer has released a Christmas song she hopes will challenge Simon Cowell's X-Factor winner for the festive number one spot.

Christmas Time is the title of Cathy Lesurf's single that comes out 30 years after she was last in the charts.

As a member of Fiddler's Dram she reached number three in 1980 with Day Trip to Bangor.

Cathy's song will not have the publicity clout of the X-Factor release. Her budget is £150.

Three decades ago Cathy Lesurf performed on Top of the Pops with her group Fiddler's Dram.

They never repeated the success of Day Trip to Bangor and are forever bracketed "one hit wonders". Cathy feels now is the time to lose that tag.

Christmas Time origins

The seeds of the song come from the death of a friend. Cathy and her husband, David Wilson, were putting together a benefit gig for Linda Sawyer when she died from cancer.

The concert still took place and the legacy was that, after years of steering clear of the stage, Cathy and David were back behind the microphone. It rekindled their love of music.

Then Cathy's 19-year-old daughter Rosalyn alerted her to the fact that more than 60,000 people had watched clips of Day Trip Bangor on YouTube.

I wish him (Simon Cowell) all the luck in the world and I wish myself all the luck in the world. Let the people decide
Cathy Lesurf on competing against the X-Factor contestants

It just so happened that David had written a tune for Cathy called Christmas Time.

The singer said: "We're all singing it round the house and I thought maybe it's time Bangor had a companion piece and I said 'hello' to all those people out there who like what I do."

Ready for Christmas

The song was recorded in October 2009. A few weeks later a video was filmed in Cathy's back garden featuring family and friends. It was shot in a day.

The whole process cost around £150 after Cathy, from West Bridgford, called in some favours. She said it matched the spirit of the song.

"It's about getting the family together, getting the tree, the presents. It's having a big Christmas Eve party, it's singing carols. I love the traditional message of Christmas. I love the love in it."

The chorus to the song goes: "All the family round the tree, A gift for you, a gift for me."

Fiddler's Dram in 1980
Day Trip to Bangor was a hit for Cathy Lesurf and Fiddler's Dram in 1980

Composer David Wilson said: "That's the heart of it - sharing gifts and expressing love and affection. It's thinking about the person you're buying the gift for."

Now Christmas Time is available to download (CD versions might be pressed if there is a demand), a facility that was not available when Fiddler's Dram were in the charts.

"This is something new for me. I come from the days of steam driven music," said Cathy.

"We're emailing everybody we know and we're asking everyone to download it and pass it on. We want it to go out at grassroots level. If it goes it'll be because people have made it go."

David Wilson said the omens are good.

"People I've played it to have made such a strong connection with it. It's a simple expression of the joy of Christmas.

"For that to make an impact gives me faith. It tells me people want to feel that simple love and affection."

Taking on the X-Factor

Songwriter David Wilson
David Wilson was not a fan of Christmas until he met Cathy

Cathy Lesurf verses Simon Cowell is the musical equivalent of David verses Goliath but the Nottinghamshire singer is undaunted.

"I prefer to go with a positive approach that they'll do their thing and it's very different to mine.

"I wouldn't do it if I didn't think I could get back in the charts. I hope people hear it and like it and it's another little miracle like Bangor.

"I wish him (Simon Cowell) all the luck in the world and I wish myself all the luck in the world. Let the people decide."

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