Live Aid is 25 today

Do you remember July 13, 1985?

Live Aid was the biggest concert of the time. A massive gig at Wembley stadium in London, mirrored in Philadelphia in the USA, and using satellite technology for broadcasters to jump between the gigs – amazing technology back then.

I was only a kid, but I remember watching most of the concert on TV. I remember it seemed quite chaotic, roadies and technicians all over the stage trying to keep the show going as mics failed or cables were pulled out of where they should be plugged in.

I remember being impressed that Phil Collins could play a gig in London and then fly on Concorde to the USA, to play another gig on the same day with Led Zeppelin – though that has gone down in history as one of their worst shows ever and I don’t think it’s featured on any of the official films of the event. Jet lag… or they just didn’t rehearse together much…

Status Quo seemed like the perfect opening act, three-cord rock. u2 became the global act they still are because of that day, and Queen revived a flagging career and were popular again until the premature death of Freddie Mercury, because they blew away all the other acts by involving every single fan in their act.

This gig was also special as it created the era of the charity concert. Now there is charity fatigue as rock concerts seem to be staged for all manner of good causes, but this one started the ball rolling.

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