Queen's Brian May is ready to party (for a good cause) like it’s 1985.
The guitarist has spoken out about how he’d love a repeat of the iconic ‘80s Live Aid concert — but this time to raise money and awareness about climate change. The first concert was the largest-scale benefit of its time, watched by 1.5 billion people in more than 150 countries, and raising an estimated $245 million for Ethiopian famine relief.
Queen performed at Live Aid alongside U2, Madonna, Elton John, David Bowie, Mick Jagger, and Phil Collins, who played in London and then hopped on the Concorde to take the stage again in Philadelphia hours later.
Queen’s prominent role in the concert was featured in the 2018 film Bohemian Rhapsody, which won this year's Academy Award for Best Picture, among others.
"It probably would take the younger generation to take that bull by the horns," May told the Daily Mirror. "We'd help in any way we can, but think that's what it would require."
But May admits times have changed, and throwing an updated Live Aid that only focuses on climate change wouldn’t be “as easy as it seems.”
Concerts have a long history of being a popular way to raise money and awareness for worldwide charitable causes. George Harrison of the Beatles organized a concert for Bangladesh to raise money for refugees in 1971. A London concert raised money for AIDS and honored late Queens singer Freddie Mercury in 1992. Ten days after the Sept. 11 attacks, George Clooney helped organize “America: A Tribute to Heroes,” which raised hundreds of millions for United Way.
Global Citizen kicked off its own annual festival in New York in 2012, to which attendees win tickets through taking action toward ending extreme poverty. The advocacy organization has also held festivals around the world in countries such as India, Germany, and South Africa. Since 2011, more than 22 million actions have been taken, leading to more than $37.9 billion in commitments and more than 2.25 billion lives set to be affected by 2030.