20 years on from their Live Aid (1985) triumph, Bob Geldof and Midge Ure recruit the world's music superstars once again to perform live and put pressure on Western governments to help Africa and Make Poverty History.

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20 years on from their Live Aid (1985) triumph, Bob Geldof and Midge Ure recruit the world's music superstars once again to perform live and put pressure on Western governments to help Africa and Make Poverty History.

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i have to join the cynical crowd
27 August 2005 | by (guelph, canada) – See all my reviews

Other than seeing Pink Floyd play together probably for the very last time ever, this whole fiasco was a gigantic waste of time. I'm sorry, I know we all want to believe it was a great event helping people in Africa, that signing petitions online does something (I call this slactivism) but I'm afraid to say it wasn't and they don't.

What we have is a bunch of aging and not so aging rockers and pop stars patting themselves on the back and stroking their collective egos by playing for hundreds of thousands of people (live) and millions on TV and the web. Its a great big feel good fest, the musicians get to play for a large crowd, and the audience gets off the hook, they don't have to do anything but watch one of the most fantastic lineups ever. At least when the SARS-AID show in Toronto was going to help Toronto recover from the SARS epidemic. What did this event do? "Raise awareness" they say, well how many people really understand the issues in Africa? I do probably more than most, but I still don't really know why the hell Africa is such bad shape. I don't really know why the AIDS epidemic has hit Africa so hard. Is it just pure poverty? Was is the root cause of this poverty? Is it dictatorships? Foreign debt? That seems to be main focus of guys like Bono, but realistically what how does a concert help this? Do you really think that the leaders of the free world give a damn that bunch of people go together to listen to some music? I'm sorry, call me cynical, I do think music is important and effects our lives in a meaningful way but when I think Geldof has kind of lost his mind. He stands there so proud of himself, but is there any surprise that so many people would watch the most popular musical acts in the world? It could have had nothing to do with Africa, it could have been to celebrate sponges and people still would have shown up.

I am sorry, in 1985 it seemed magical, but it's a movie sequel, too polished, quite expected and simply a rehash of what we've already seen.


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