Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Band Aid makes a new single, 30 years later

By Mark Phillips November 18, 2014

LONDON - If it sounds familiar, it is. A collection of rock stars gathers to record a charity single in aid of another crisis in Africa.

It's Ebola this time. But this is an idea that goes back thirty-years. Back to the famine in Ethiopia that killed hundreds of thousands and that led to the first Band Aid charity appeal in 1984.

The man behind the original Band Aid is the man behind the latest one, former rocker turned rock-activist, Bob Geldof.

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"The only similarity between '84 and now is that it is the poorest, as ever, that are getting attacked," said Geldof. "And that makes me enraged."

But it has made others wonder whether charity music singles have lost their novelty appeal and their usefulness as money earners.


The new single shot to the top of the download site charts almost immediately after its release. But in the age of instant music, it may actually be harder now to raise the kind of money that's been raised in the past. The original Band Aid pulled in well over $10 million. But music's cheaper now.

"Originally, it was £3.50 to buy a single," said Geldof. "Now it's 99p."

About a buck-fifty-five. That's a lot of singles to make a difference.


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