Live Aid, the legendary 1985 concert held in London and Philadelphia, is finally making its way to television sets, as today marks the UK release of the Live Aid DVD. Rocker/activist/Live Aid organizer Bob Geldof has refused to rebroadcast the concert for nearly 20 years, but has reluctantly changed his mind due to the extraordinary number of bootleg copies available. "I'm very excited that this has come out, but I couldn't believe the number of bootleg copies being sold — they are quite literally taking food from the hungry. This has to be stopped," said Geldof at the DVD launch party, reports the Associated Press.
Geldof had promised those who participated in Live Aid, including David Bowie, Queen, U2, Eric Clapton, Elton John, etc., that a recording of the show would never come out, which was why he was hesitant to rebroadcast it. "I promised all the people on Live Aid that a recording would never come out, but when I rang them all about this, everyone said OK."
The British government announced yesterday that it would refund the sales tax from the sale of the DVD and single. The Associated Press says the move will help raise an additional $7.4 million for charity.
The Live Aid DVD will be released in the US on November 16 through Warner Bros./Elektra/Atlantic, but don't expect our government to match the gesture made by the Brits. You can pre-order it now on Amazon.
When Live Aid first aired on July 13, 1985, it was viewed by an estimated 1.5 billion people on TV and raised $140 million for the victims of Ethiopia's famine.