Saturday, July 02, 2005

Live 8

I've gained many beliefs about economic and political issues in the last few years and although I don't think wealth distribution of this magnitude helps a continent that still needs to borrow money, I do think it is good to show compassion.

I remember July of 1985 very well. We were on a trip to Idaho and stayed overnight in Ely, Nevada. This is halfway from Vegas to our destination. We didn't have MTV in the house at the time (times were tough.) But, I remember being glued to the hotel room television as some of my favorite bands took the stage. The message was there "help feed the children." The bands performing played 2 songs at the most and quickly let another act hit the stage. Many musical genres were covered and there was time for several serious moments about the issues at hand.

20 years later, Live 8 brings together more countries as 9 venues stage performances with the intention to persuade the fans to contact their government officials and ask them to forgive debts owed to them by African nations. Tons of artists take the stage performing about 3 songs each. The television broadcast airs on MTV and VH1 in an 8-hour block.

My take? I'm sure most of the performances were great if we were able to see them. 3 to 3 1/2 hours of this was commercials. Several artists were shown ending one song and performing most but not all of another. Some of the performances that didn't get shown: Pet Shop Boys in Moscow, Deep Purple in Barrie, Motley Crue in Barrie, Gordon Lightfoot in Barrie, Barenaked Ladies in Barrie, Blue Rodeo in Barrie, Bruce Cockburn in Barrie, The Tragically Hip in Barrie, Sarah McLachlan in Philadelphia, Def Leppard in Philadelphia, Duran Duran in Rome, A-ha in Berlin, Chris de Burgh in Berlin, Roxy Music in Berlin, Crosby Stills & Nash in Berlin, The Cure in Paris, Annie Lennox in London and UB40 in London. That's a whole lot of performers that could have gotten even a sample of their music in there. Instead, Madonna performed 3 songs and one of them was shown again at the end. Stevie Wonder played 3, Green Day played 2 (but got replayed also), the Black Eyed Peas played 2 (and were replayed later), Linkin Park performed 3 (granted some was with Jay-Z) and Dido played 2. Sure, we expected and got more songs from Paul McCartney and U2. I lay most of this blame for bad editing, inane banter from hosts, interviews, over commercialization and missing performances on the stations. The highlight of the show remains the 3 tracks performed by a reunited Pink Floyd (which ended on a cut off version of "Comfortably Numb.") Yes, I will still buy this when it comes out on DVD because I might be able to hear what wasn't aired and the entire songs.
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Bill B. said...

Floyd played four songs total and my god they were amazing. They played Breathe first, then the other three MTV aired. They cut McCartney's good songs (he did Helter Skelter) which was insane. Damn MTV for ruining everyone's experience. I'm glad I had aol video to stream from or I would have really been let down.

Lily said...

Martin they have rebroadcasts of the shows here:

Unfortunetly I was not able to fast forward through the rebroadcasts of what I didn't want to see so I have given up till tomorrow.

I caught some of it on tv and was also surprised at their ill timing of commercials and host banter, especially that of Floyd.

Anonymous said...

I'm not quite sure how to put this to get my point across, but I'm gonna try. Live Aid way back when was the highlight of my musical memory. To see that many big groups get together for somethin so giving was incredible to me as an adolescent with hardly a care in the world.

The people who would most likely do the most good in a "fundraiser" of this sort, are people around my age (30-40yrs). We have the jobs, we have control of what we finance and are most able to voice our opinions and would most likely do it.

What irks me about what was aired was what wasn't. The majority of the acts who participated in the original concert, both overseas and in the US. They cared enough to come back and do it again 20 years later. Instead of airing these shows and reaching out to those who were there at the beginning, they targeted the teens with most of the show (and I'm still talkin about what aired and not the entire production, at least in rebroadcast you can see the others or by purchasing the cd/dvd).

I don't have anything against any of the acts they aired. I'm a music freak and listen to every genre imaginable. I've hardly ever met a song I didn't like :)

But if wishes were nickels. And I may truly be the only person who feels this way. Damn I'm

Teri said...

When you buy the DVD, are we going to have movie night?

Martin said...

We'll have to see. I don't think your hubby will enjoy seeing a concert DVD as much as a real film.

RT said...

OK, now that no seems to be paying attention to this post anymore...

Can I beat up Alex, Martin??? Please???

(Wanting to tax us more to feed the hungry... Doesn't he know how many farms our govt has shut down just to keep our food prices up??? And he's wanting to give them More money???)