'Clouds' singer Zach Sobiech named one of CNN's 'Extraordinary People'


"Clouds" singer and songwriter Zach Sobiech will be featured on CNN Thursday night in a special on the most extraordinary people of 2013, the Pioneer Press reports.

The late Lakeland, Minnesota, teen's story will be featured in "CNN Special Report: Extraordinary People," which begins at 9 p.m. CDT.

Zach Sobiech's mom, Laura Sobiech, said her son's story will be featured in the last seven minutes of the program.

HLN's "Morning Express with Robin Meade" anchor Robin Meade came to Minnesota around Thanksgiving to interview Laura Sobiech for the special, the Pioneer Press said.

According to CNN, the special will be hosted by Meade and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper.

Zach Sobiech died May 20 of osteosarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer. He recorded "Clouds" as a goodbye song to his family and friends, and the video for it went viral.

To date the "Clouds" video has been seen more than 9.3 million times on YouTube.

"Clouds" not only reached No. 1 on the iTunes charts a few hours after Sobiech's memorial service, it also reached No. 1 on Billboard magazine's Digital Rock Songs chart a little over a week after the teen's death.

The song also came in at No. 59 on Billboard's list of top songs of 2013.

In a Billboard readers' survey Tuesday, Colleen Theis, the COO of global music distributor The Orchard, said Sobiech was the most important and influential artist of 2013.

"This is a story that continues to grow," Theis said. "Positive and lasting contributions like these are part of our industry we don't applaud as loudly as we should, and which bring real meaning and a sense of purpose to what we do."

Theis mentioned in tribute the gathering earlier this month at the Mall of America, where more than 5,000 people gathered to sing "Clouds" at the KS95 for Kids Radiothon.

In an interview with KARE 11 the day of the event, Laura Sobiech said it's the comfort of knowing that her son is at peace, as well as the support of family and friends, which will help them get through their first holiday season without him.

"Our faith tells us that he is safe and he is happy," Laura Sobiech told the station. "There's peace there, knowing that we'll see him again, too. And that he's still around. We still feel him."

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