Friday, February 29, 2008

WE ARE THE falsetto

Too weird. Do any of you remember Bob Geldof? His lesser-known persona was that of being the lead singer in the Irish rock band The Boom Town Rats.

He became famous for organizing that singular event, Live Aid, a formal gathering of rock stars that recorded the really, I mean really horrible song WE ARE THE WORLD as a fund raiser for hunger in Africa. You may remember the song, if not the worthy cause it was written for. There were Live Aid concerts. I remember the hype surrounding it, how Bob Dylan was talked into performing. I remember a story about the actual recording session: some relatively little-known Canadian folk singer was standing next to Neil Young as the group of musicians sang. The folk singer leaned over during a break, saying, "Neil. You're flat." Young retorted, "Hey man! That's my STYLE!"

It seems Mr. Geldof's interest in the welfare of Africa the continent and in its manifold extreme problems has not faded. On President George Bush's recent trip to Africa, Geldof came along as a spokesman. As a spokesman for all of the good things Bush has done for Africa during his term! Here's the article.

The article is noteworthy not just in that it highlights little-known initiatives in Africa started by Bush (You'll remember his State of the Union address at the beginning of his second term when he spelled out what he was going to do for the continent?). What is enjoyable about the article is the relaxed give-and-take conversation between Geldof and the President.
"I gave the President my book. He raised an eyebrow. "Who wrote this for ya, Geldof?" he said without looking up from the cover. Very dry. "Who will you get to read it for you, Mr. President?" I replied. No response."

The Most Powerful Man in the World studied the front cover. Geldof in Africa — " 'The international best seller.' You write that bit yourself?"

"That's right. It's called marketing. Something you obviously have no clue about or else I wouldn't have to be here telling people your Africa story."

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