In the recent book on the PM by Anthony Seldon, the author described how Cameron wouldn’t cut foreign aid for fear of a clash with Bob Geldof. This shocking fact reveals a lot and none of it good, about David Cameron. Unfortunately, Live Aid, such a great rock event, has been judged as ultimately corrosive and harmful to Africa, the place it was meant to help, and great offence was caused because African musicians were snubbed from the show.“This event backfired, despite the best of intentions. It was founded on a misconception, promoted a patronising view of the world and encouraged the idea that soundbites, stunts and simplistic gestures can heal the most complex problems.” said journalist Ian Birrell.
First, it was western acts such as Queen, U2 and Madonna who saw record sales soar into the stratosphere after a global promotion to an audience counted in billions. And second, by denying African artists a platform, it demonstrated a mindset that the West knows best — that it is our voice that really counts, even when dealing with other people’s problems.
This was compounded by Live8 two decades later, proving that nothing had been learnt. Such an error could almost be forgiven once, but not twice. Keith Richards, the Rolling Stones guitarist and a man who understands the history of music, rightly refused to play.
Always anti-authority, Keith Richards has said Live Aid was really all about Bob. Ultimately he refused to play with the British musicians because he was repelled by Geldof’s lefty politics. Despite being begged by Bob to participate, the Wild Horses rocker did not feel comfortable with the way the awareness-raising event was actually closely linked to politicians.He says, “I just thought the connection between Geldof and the Labour Party was too tight, and I don’t see debt reduction as being like – it’s not going to feed the babies down there. “I mean, who’s this gratifying and where are the Africans? Where was their say? And I thought it was being stuck together too fast.” Talking about the pressure on him to participate, he says, “Oh yeah, all the Sirs had a bash, believe me. I wondered who was pulling the strings, that’s all.”
Keith quit the British event and played in the US with Bob Dylan.
Saint Bob ruled by his own ego? This is the man who has such an effect on our PM, he influences the size of the foreign aid budget. Only a superficial thinker, lacking judgement, with no insight, could be so naive as to allow himself to be dictated to by a second string rocker like Bob Geldof. Musically, Bob has had only had one major hit. His private life is scarred by tragedy and his criticisms dumping all the blame for the migrant crisis onto the UK are sanctimonious and ill judged. He is still on the same life long ego trip, in spite of his utter ignorance of politics and reality.