posted in music
On July 13, 1985, Live Aid was opened at Wembley Stadium by Princess Diana and Prince Charles. The 16-hour super-concert continued (via satellite) in Philadelphia, and was broadcast worldwide to a billion viewers in 110 countries.
The brainchild of The Boomtown Rats singer Bob Geldof, Live Aid was a response to Geldof's 1984 trip to Ethiopia, where he witnessed the horrors of starvation during a famine that threatened to kill millions.
After the trip, Geldof called up his connections (Culture Club, Duran Duran, Phil Collins, U2, Wham!, and others) and recorded a song, "Do They Know It's Christmas?" as a super-group called Band Aid. It raised $10 million for charity.
In the US, Lionel Ritchie and Michael Jackson recorded a response track with their buds: "We Are the World" raised $44 million.
Live Aid itself was an international success, raising $127 million by itself and shaming Western nations into shipping excess grain to Africa for immediate famine relief.