In 1985 a bunch of pop stars came together as one to record the song ‘We Are The World’ under the mantle USA for Africa (United Support of Artists for Africa). Here we are in 2010, and We Are The World Again. This time the goal is to raise money for Haiti.
The song was written by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie, which adds to the nostalgia effect. Lionel’s daughter Nicole Richie was there this time, along with old-timers like Barbara Streisand and Natalie Cole.
I don’t mean “old-timers” in a bad way. But it’s interesting to look at the line-up this time around. In 1985, my favorite moment in the original We Are The World was Bob Dylan singing “There’s a choice we’re making / We’re saving our own lives / It’s true well make a better day / Just you and me.” It was out of place but interesting. (Here is a gallery of a few moments from the original video, which is posted below.)
For the 2010 remake, Lil’ Wayne will sing the Bob Dylan’s lyrics, according to MTV. (So they figured they’d replace someone who can’t sing with someone who can’t sing? Rim shot.) There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. For me, it just seems like the pop landscape is more bizarre than it was in 1985. An article at LATimes.com says, “The scene on Monday, like the original session, was a fascinating mix of star confluence.” This one seems more fascinating, because some of the folks who were there the first time are still there. “Where else would 83-year-old Tony Bennett sing in unison with 15-year-old Justin Bieber?” Where indeed. Newly mined best new artist Grammy winner Zac Brown told LATimes.com that “like standing in the classic records section at the Turtles music store looking at all the cover…It’s ridiculous and it’s wonderful and for a good cause.” Ah yes. To paraphrase Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, by classic, he means old.
I can’t seem to find a complete list of the artists (why do we always say “artists” when talking about pop stars? Do they paint when they aren’t making music? Actually, some of them do), although someone on Twitter says that neither Lady Gaga, Beyonce, Miley or Taylor sang on the remake (that’s Miley Ray Cyrus Hannah Montana Stewart Lipschutz and Taylor Swift, for those who aren’t hep to the scene like I am).
Here is the video for the original 1985 We Are The World. The new one was only recorded yesterday so it isn’t out yet. Methinks it will be available on iTunes soon. Another change from 25 years ago.
In other news…
On Monday a small plane landed on the New Jersey turnpike. Really. You know how I know? Because there’s video.
I have to seriously question why anyone is still flying these little planes. This one was a traffic reporter in Philadelphia. Why is this necessary? There’s no other way to get the traffic? Can’t they subscribe to a service or something? Does every station need their own view of the traffic? And I thought they used helicopters, not planes. Feh.
China has warned President Barack Obama not to meet with the Dalai Lama. They say such a meeting “would harm bilateral relations,” according to The Guardian. So, like, now the President has to meet with the Dalai Lama, right? Otherwise he looks like a wuss. If the President does meet with the Lama, I hope he says “Hello Dalai.” (Apologies to The Howard Stern Show, from whom I stole that joke.)
I can’t find the images, so you’ll have to take my word for it on this one. Over the weekend, the headline on the front page of the Wall Street Journal was “Growth Hits 6 Year High.” On Monday, February 1 it was “Deficit to Reach All Time High.” Another example of the Bipolar States Of America.
Today is Groundhog Day and PETA would like to replace Punxsutawney Phil with a robot. I could get on board with this plan if the robot were a Mecha Groundhog with jet boots and laser beam eyes. Here’s a video of the real Phil, sans lasers, poking his head up and predicting… what? You’ll have to watch.
I don’t know what PETA is talking about. The little guy looks thrilled. And the groundhog looks happy too. Sort of.