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Diamond records charity song for Boston

| Saturday, June 29, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Neil Diamond visited Boston in the days following the marathon bombings and left convinced he should do something to help.

“I was moved by the unity and the attitude of the people in Boston,” Diamond said. “And that's really all a songwriter needs, is to be inspired. It doesn't happen very often, but when it does, you have to follow that muse, and I did.”

The result is “Freedom Song (They'll Never Take Us Down),” a new patriotically themed song Diamond will release July 2 through iTunes and Amazon. All proceeds from the song will go to benefit the Boston One Fund and the Wounded Warriors Project.

Diamond watched coverage of the April 15 bombings unfold from afar, then visited the city the following Saturday. The Red Sox, the city's Major League Baseball franchise, adopted the 72-year-old singer's hit “Sweet Caroline” as an eighth-inning anthem some time ago and had invited him to perform it live.

Diamond returned home and began work on “Freedom Song.” He said in a phone interview it took about six weeks to write and record.

He will perform the song live for the first time July 4 in Washington, D.C., at a Washington Nationals-Milwaukee Brewers baseball game and during PBS' “A Capitol Fourth,” broadcast from the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol.

“I didn't know exactly what would happen with this song, but I did know I had to write it,” Diamond said. “So, I set out on that creative journey of writing something that would lift people up, lift their spirits in the way that mine was lifted when I flew to Boston to sing at the Red Sox game.”

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