Africa Calling DVD
NTSC DVD – Regions 2,3,4,5
Most people will remember July 2nd 2005 as being the day that Bob Geldof put on his Live Aid hat with the grand aim of persuading world leaders to Make Poverty History. He enlisted many A-list musical celebrities to appear at concerts in London, Berlin, Paris, Philadelphia, and Rome. Tens of thousands were packed like sardines in Hyde Park to watch Pink Floyd relive their glorious past, alongside Elton John (and his friend Pete), The Who, Paul McCartney, Mariah Carey, Velvet Revolver, and the brief appearance of Senegalese superstar Youssou N’Dour with Dido. A nation sat glued to their television screens.
However, at the bottom of a disused quarry in Cornwall, the cream of African talent had assembled to party in their own right. The venue was the fabulous Eden Project (Bio-domes, eco friendly buildings, plants, and co-founder and Chief Executive Tim Smit? What more could one ask for?) and the occasion was brought about because of the distinct lack of African musicians at any of the other events. Youssou N’Dour was single-handedly trying to make up for it by flying from Hyde Park, to Eden, to Paris, but even his remarkable stamina wasn’t enough. What the world needed was a proper African music celebration, and they got it at the Eden Project with bells on. And for anyone that was lucky enough to be there, it was an occasion that they will never forget. It is where many people believed the heart of Live 8 lay and where the real voices of Africa could be heard.
“It was a moment of magic and madness,” Tim Smit recalls. “Magic because it worked, madness because the odds against it were huge.” Tim goes on to recall that Live 8 was in rough water in certain quarters. He called WOMAD director Thomas Brooman, who in turn spoke to Peter Gabriel, who arranged a meeting with Midge Ure (who was helping Geldof organise Live 8). “Peter spoke to Youssou N’Dour, who agreed to join him as the joint band co-ordinator and also suggested the name ‘Africa Calling’. Peter and Thomas agreed on the ideal line-up and although some of them were unavailable we got almost everyone we wanted.”
“It was wonderful that so many African musicians were willing to join us at such short notice,” says Peter Gabriel. “The artists felt that it was really important that Live 8 had a strong African musical presence.”Read more about this release »