“For 20 minutes, a different Queen reigned over England.”
On July 13, 1985, at Wembley Stadium in London, Live Aid, a worldwide rock concert organized to raise money for the relief of famine-stricken Africans commenced. The 16-hour “superconcert” was globally telecast by satellite to more than a billion viewers in 110 nations.
The impact Live Aid had on the lives of millions of Ethopians and the Sudanese people cannot be described in mere words. More than 75 acts were performed, at the fore of which was a show-stopping performance by Queen, particularly from frontman Freddie Mercury, who unexpectedly stole the show with a fierce performance. With the group losing steam as they went into the early 1980s after a career of multiple hits, they offered the crowd an unforgettable 20-minute performance. Going from “Bohemian Rhapsody” to “We Will Rock You” and finishing with “We Are the Champions,” Queen captivated the audience with a journey through their hits, with Mercury at the helm.
I personally deem that this “superconcert” shows the impact that music can have on world dynamics, and the change it can bring about. Live Aid eventually raised $127 million in famine relief for African nations, and the publicity it generated encouraged Western nations to make available enough surplus grain to end the immediate hunger crisis in Africa.
Although it is disputed till date as to whether the funds were actually allowed to go through by then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher or not, but what is indisputable is that fact that this event created much-needed global recognition of the deplorable predicament in Africa, which forced world leaders to recognise the misery of their fellow human beings and to administer an imperative response.