Monday, February 22, 2010

Know Your 80s Charity Supergroups REDUX

(original post here)

Twenty-five freaking years ago, "We Are the World" was born from Lionel and Michael (their last names are not required!) Now, MJ is gone, and the airwaves are quite different. In the diverse and expanded universe we call "pop music" (read: R&B), EVERYONE wants a piece of the charity cake. If only some ground-shaking event would make an old song rise from the grave (read: subtle voodoo undead reference). Enter, Artists for Haiti!

I have to get this side-by-side comparison out of the way... Here it is, past and present.

USA for Africa (old)
Song title: "We Are the World"
People count: 45
Blind persons: 2
Ghostbusters involved? Dan Akroyd
Jacksons: 7
Dudes: 0
Actual Africans: 0
Country musicians: 3
Non-artist celebrities: 2

Artists for Haiti (new)
Song title: "We Are the World"
People count: 72
Blind persons: 0
Ghostbusters involved? none
Jacksons: 5* (*MJ posthumous)
Dudes: 2 (Vince Vaughn and... Jeff Bridges)
Actual Haitians: 2 (Jimmy Jean-Louis, Wyclef)
Country musicians: 2
Non-artist celebrities: 1 (Vince)

Food for thought?

I also wanted to cover the charity song by Little Steven (Steven Van Zandt). This guitarist for Springsteen thought apartheid sucked in South Africa. But, it was way too political of a song, and it didn't fare as well as the "peace, love" vibe of "We Are the World". There's even anti-Reagan sentiment to be had!

The most hilarious thing I ever learned from Pop-Up Video (about this video) is that Jimmy Cliff ran up a hotel bill of $15,000 while waiting for his solo shoot. He was in it a total of 4 seconds.

Artists United Against Apartheid (AUAA)
Song title: "Sun City"
People count: 38
Blind persons: 0
Jacksons?: 0
Ghostbusters involved? 0
Artists still alive today: 36 (Miles Davis, Joey Ramone)

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