Monday, February 04, 2013

"We Are the World": A Song the Blast from the Past

I was living in Japan. I was in third grade. This song was literally E.V.E.R.Y.W.H.E.R.E. We sang it in choir. I sang it on my way home. We saw the video on TV alongside those heartwrenching photos of famine and death that were coming out of Africa that year. It was the massive, worldwide hit, We Are the World that written by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie and gathered and directed by Quincy Jones.

What I find amazing about this video, watching it through the eyes of an adult, is that this is such a great array of popular vocal talent from that time, but they are all singing together. True, there are solos, and a lot of the assembled singers get to belt out a phrase or two, but much of the song - and of the video - shows these super-A-list singers standing together as a chorus; melding their voices together.

And that I now find so amazing.

After 25 years, in 2010, there was a re-make of the song:

in addition to a Spanish version - Somos El Mundo - to raise funds for rebuilding after the Haiti earthquake.

Woah. To me, they are still powerful songs, and (hopefully) they remain powerful political songs.

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