8 isn't enough

The moment that killed Live 8 dead was that part when Madonna, in London with gospel choir, got fixated on a line from her song "Music": "Music/makes the people/come together." Of course she's got to sing it over and over: SHE'S MAKING A POINT HERE GODDAMMIT. Demanding that everyone clap to it -- like, getting MAD AT the Golden Circle crowd not standing up for it. And yeah, like, we get it, Madonna: you wrote this song a few years ago, and now here's the perfect occasion for it, like when you find the perfect pair of shoes for that really expensive restaurant. And you're going to make the moment fit the song, whether anyone likes it or not. "Come on, I'm not stopping until everyone has their hands in the air!" she's shouting. "Just for one minute!" And that's sorta when you start wondering about the bourgeoisie and the rebels she's been yapping about; up to a point, you're willing to let Madonna have her little moment: fine, you can be a revolutionary pop artist who uses mass following as a canvas, whatever. But then she just ruins it, she's just naked out there: a spoiled, dumpy, out-of-breath soccer mom who wants the world to have it her way. A minute later, you're thinking less about Madonna than about the whole big Live 8 shebang, wondering how the hell we got here again -- how we got back to this place where we're supposed to believe that pop music is a moral force for good. Why does anyone want that dream? I mean, we know why Bono wants it, but that's about Bono, isn't it? Geldoff looks like he couldn't give a shit, the rest of the bands are just psyched that by some freak accident there's an audience of a billion for rock and roll for a day. Which never happens because nobody really cares about music anymore. A billion people don't give a shit about pop. A billion people don't care about Madonna or U2 or Will Smith, let alone the Kaiser Chiefs. Elton John -- maybe like 750 million people care about Elton John. But a billion? A billion people, maybe, want to do something nice, or at least be present as something genuinely nice happens. Tell me something nice happened. Convince me the world is a nicer place. I'd like to tell my kids I saw it happen.

(P.S.: heard some people mention how Run-DMC were the only hip-hop act at the original Live Aid. What them folks didn't talk about was how the live telecast CUT AWAY about 15 seconds into their performance to show somebody in London: I wanna say Sting but can't quite remember. Shit ruffled my feathers for weeks.)

ITEM: classic rock acts record sales soar after Live 8.
FLICKR: the people's Live 8 snapshots archived

Pink Floyd, "Money" (live at Live 8, via Stereogum)
U2, "One" and "Unchained Melody" (live at Live 8, via Music Cherry)
Largehearted Boy catalogues the bittorent feeds for various Live 8 gigs.
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