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"White people don't do [soul music] very well because we don't want to let go. Nihilism suits us." — Bono

U2 Events: 1985

U2 at Live Aid

Live Aid Logo

16 hours of music. Dozens of artists covering both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, and a handful more contributing via satellite from elsewhere around the globe. All in the name of raising money for famine relief in Africa. 

Live Aid PhotoUp against the likes of Queen, The Who, Led Zeppelin's reunion, David Bowie, Bob Dylan, Elton John, and more, you could understand if U2 -- with all of 5 years under their belt since "Boy" was released -- played their 20 minute set and slid quietly into the background to let the heavy hitters carry the day.

But U2 delivered a performance that was critically hailed by most and put them on the rising tide toward worldwide fame ... making U2's performance at Live Aid one of the band's defining moments.




July 12, 2010 - @U2 - Live Aid Memories: 25 Years Later
July 11, 2010 - @U2 - Column: off the Record..., vol. 9-418
May 13, 2002 - The Independent - It Is 17 Years Since Live Aid
November 22, 1985 - Washington Post - Live Aid And the Swirl of Criticism
July 19, 1985 - Hot Press - The Great Leap of Faith - Part 2
July 19, 1985 - Hot Press - The Great Leap of Faith - Part 1
July 15, 1985 - Washington Post - After the Music, The Memories
July 01, 1985 - @U2 - Live Aid Artist Roster/Lineup
July 01, 1985 - Joan Baez's autobiography, 'And a Voice to Sing With' - Joan Baez Writes About U2 at Live Aid
June 11, 1985 - Washington Post - Rock Against Famine


U2 was mentioned briefly in two other "recap" articles. The appropriate passages are included here:

Robert Hilburn in the Los Angeles Times:

There were many, generous, warming moments during the Wembley show: Elvis Costello bypassing the chance to showcase his own gripping songs to lead the audience in a sing-along of the Beatles' "All You Need Is Love"; U2's inspired performance, which demonstrated that heartfelt, purposeful rock is still being made.

Richard Harrington in the Washington Post:

To the fans in Philadelphia it didn't seem to make much difference whether the stars were live and bright or faded and loud; they cheered along, particularly for Ireland's U2, and provided great harmonic support on Queen's "We Are the Champions."

U2 at Live Aid Photos
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