Queen at Live Aid

Today marks the 37th anniversary of the Live Aid concerts.

Live Aid was a benefit concert held on Saturday 13 July 1985, as well as a music-based fundraising initiative. The original event was organised by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise further funds for relief of the 1983–1985 famine in Ethiopia, a movement that started with the release of the successful charity single “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” in December 1984. Billed as the “global jukebox”, Live Aid was held simultaneously at Wembley Stadium in London, UK, attended by about 72,000 people and John F. Kennedy Stadium in Philadelphia, US, attended by 89,484 people.

The one act that stood out during the concert was Queen, their performance in Live Aid is akin to Elvis’s comeback special. As with Elvis in the Comeback special, Queen’s career was basically rebooted at the Live Aid concert.

Queen didn’t open or close the Live Aid show. They performed just before 7pm, uncharacteristically in daylight, bookended by gigantic acts like U2, Elton John and David Bowie.

Past their peak and still suffering from the catastrophe of a misadvised run of shows in apartheid South Africa the previous year, Queen was not expected to be in the limelight. Especially Freddie Mercury had been the focus of disparaging coverage and rumors in the press, about his sexuality.

Despite all the pessimism , Queen did shine and it is still seen as one of the best music performance ever, although the set only lasted only 21 minutes, it remained in musical history to this date and will remain there for a long time.

Queen were immediately preceded at Wembley by the comedians Griff Rhys Jones and Mel Smith – who were dressed as policemen and joked about receiving a complaint about the noise “from a woman in Belgium.” They introduced “the next combo” as “Her Majesty… Queen.”

A truly charismatic Mercury, who looked full of confidence, jogged out on to a vast stage whose top was adorned with a banner saying “Feed The World.” Mercury, sporting his trademark mustache and wearing white jeans, a white tank top, and with a studded band around his right bicep, began by sitting at the piano and playing a short, inspired version of “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

During “Radio Ga Ga” he got up and strutted around the stage, using the microphone and stand as a prop, and getting the fired-up crowd to join in with the chorus. The next few moments were remarkable, as Mercury led the 72,000 spectators in some spine-tingling vocal improvisation, as they sang along to “ay-oh.” His final, wonderful vocal was dubbed “the note heard around the world.”

This is the full session of Queen at Live Aid, sit back and enjoy.

sources

https://edition.cnn.com/interactive/2018/11/opinions/queen-live-aid-cnnphotos/

I betcha you didn’t know… The story behind Ultravox

Who doesn’t know that classic hit Vienna by Ultravox? We all remember that video which so prominently featured Ultravox’s front man and singer Midge Ure.

However it took quite a bit of effort to get Vienna made. Ultravox started off in 1974 but were named Tiger Lily at that stage. The band was formed by Dennis Leigh aka John Foxx. On 14 March 1975 they released their only single titled “Ain’t Misbehavin'”,which was a cover of the classic Fats Waller jazz song from 1929. Tiger Lily’s version would feature in a soft porn film.

Because of some changes in the line up the band decided to change their name, so between 1975 and 1976 they were known as The Zips, Fire of London, London Soundtrack, and The Damned, there was already a band called the Damned so they eventually settled for ‘Ultravox!’. Some time in 1978, the group also dropped the exclamation mark, becoming simply “Ultravox”

That still would not be the end of it . John Foxx left the band in 1979 and was replaced by Midge Ure , who had temporarily been playing with Irish hard rock band Thin Lizzy on their American tour, replacing Gary Moore. Midge Ure had also worked with a band called Visage together with Billy Currie who was the violinist of Ultravox . For all you keen music fans you will recognize the name Visage, they had a massive hit with the single “Fade to Grey” which was released in November 1980.

Another thing which few people will know is Midge Ure’s involvement in Live Aid and Band Aid. Not only did he co write the single “Do they know it is Christmas time” he also organized most of the bands for the legendary concerts. He received very little credit for that from Bob Geldof. For those of you who watched Top of the Pops on BBC in the 1980’s will remember the theme music. It was called Yellow Pearl which came from Phil Lynott’s solo album Solo in Soho . The song was also co written by Midge Ure.

The forgotten Live Aid acts.

live aid

On July 13 1985, one of the biggest ever music concerts took place. Live Aid. The aim of the concerts was to raise  funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine.

The concerts are often referred to as a dual-venue benefit concert, which is actually not true. Yes the main concerts took place in London and Philadelphia but there were other concerts held in tandem in Australia,Asia and other European countries.

Another thing that happened was the relaxing on restrictions to Rock music in the Soviet Union

The Soviet Unions’s  Contribution for Live Aid was the Band ‘Autograph’

USSR LINK

Their performance was broadcast via Satellite from Moscow to Wembley,London.They were introduced by Introduction by Vladimir Posner .They played 2 songs Golovokruzhenie ( ” Vertigo “) and Nam nuzhen nir ( ” We need peace “).

Yugoslavia contributed with their equivalent to Band Aid and USA For Africa with a song called “For a Million Years” the song was introduced by Mladen Popovic , who also gave some background information to the song.

BB King was performing at the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Hague,Netherlands that night and joined also via satellite link and played 4 songs.

“When It All Comes Down”
“Why I Sing the Blues”
“Don’t Answer the Door”
“Rock Me Baby”

BB King

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