Sunday, 18 June 2017

713 Live Aid

First  viewed  : 13  July  1985

This  of  course  was  the  TV  event  of  the  year, the  huge  concert  following  on  from  the  Band  Aid  record. I  have  already  written  about  it  on  other  blogs  so  you'll  have  to  forgive  any  repetition  here.

The  TV  coverage  was  on  BBC Two,  compered  by  the  Whistle  Test  team  with  various  Radio  One  DJs  and  other  celebrities  dropping  by  to  help.  Some  of  these  no  doubt  baffled   American  viewers  and  Ian  Astbury  from  The  Cult,  who'd  only  just  cracked  the  Top  40 , baffled  everybody  including  host  David  Hepworth  who  only  worked  out  who  he  was  right  at  the  end  of  the  link. The  Wembley  Stadium  concert  finished  around  9pm  with  the  one  at  the  JFK  Stadium  in  Philadelphia  continuing  into  the  small  hours. It  should  be  remembered  that  other  countries  were  participating  too  as  sporadic  satellite  inserts  showed.

I  didn't  watch  it  right  through. I  had  to  compromise  with  my  Dad  as  there  was  cricket  on  BBC  One. I  watched  the  first  few  acts  - Status  Quo, Style  Council, Boomtown  Rats ,Adam  Ant  ( a  one  song  set  comprising  his  failed  comeback  hit )  and  Ultravox. The  latter  were  one  of  the  few  acts  I  genuinely  wanted  to  see  because  apparently  Bob  Geldof  and  Harvey  Goldsmith  ( presumably  with  Midge  Ure's  acquiescence  )  had  decided  they  didn't  want  any  synth  acts  apart  from  Ultravox  so  no  OMD, Human  League  or  Depeche  Mode. I  can  understand  the  thinking,  that  they  were  putting  on  a  rock  concert  but  other  people  on  the  bill  - Style Council, Sade, solo  Bryan  Ferry , Nik  Kershaw  - weren't  playing  stadium-friendly  music  either.

I  came  back  to  it    briefly  around  4.30  during  Paul  Young's  set  then  it  was  tea  time  and  when  I  returned  it  was  Queen, universally  regarded  as  the  best  set  of  the day. I  then  saw  the Dancing  In  The  Streets video, Simple  Minds, David  Bowie, Pamela  Stephenson  blubbing  at  the  Ethiopian  footage  set  to  The  Cars'  Drive, The  Who , Elton  John, Madonna  with  The  Thompson  Twins  ( one  imagines  her  viewing  that  now  and  asking  "Who  were  those  guys  again ? ),  Paul  McCartney  and  his  malfunctioning  microphone   and  then  the  all  star  rendition  of   Do  They  Know  Its  Christmas   featuring  a  peeved  Stuart  Adamson  whose  band  had  been  left  off  the  bill  because  Geldof  thought  they'd  split  up.

That  closed  the  Wembley  concert . I  stayed  with  Philadelphia  through  Tom  Petty, The  Cars  , Neil  Young  and  The  Power  Station   featuring  Michael  Des  Barres   deputising  for  the  indisposed  Robert  Palmer. Then  Jeff  Bridges  took  the  mike  to  do  the  link  to  the  next  act. With  no  clear  idea  of  what  he  was  going  to  say,  the  actor  made  a  complete  tit  of  himself, improvising  a  history  lesson  about  "us  flower  children"   before  finishing  with  the  words  "Phew  rock  and  roll". The  memory  intruded  when  watching  his  films   for  years  afterwards.
The  next  act  were  unfortunately  Crosby  Stills  and  Nash  who  carried  on  in  that  vein  giving  little  homilies  about  Woodstock  before  a  set  of  their  most  anodyne  songs. I  decided  it  was  time  for  bed  so  yes  guys  you  literally  did  send  me  to  sleep.

No comments:

Post a Comment