With the ongoing worldwide Ebola crisis in full force, a new version of Band Aid will join musical forces to remake “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” to mark the 30th anniversary of the original. Sir Bob Geldolf and Midge Ure announced this week their plans for this charity project to raise funds and awareness to fight Ebola. It was thirty years ago this month that Geldolf, lead singer of The Boomtown Rats, and Ure, of the band Ultravox, put together Band Aid to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia in 1984. Geldolf and Ure co-wrote the now classic song and asked a few of their friends to volunteer their time and voices to sing on the charity single. Those friends included Sting, Bono, Paul Young, Duran Duran, Boy George and other well known artists of their era. The song became one of the world’s biggest-selling singles ever after its release and has raised over 24 million for its causes.
Ebola “is a particularly pernicious illness because it renders humans untouchable and that is sickening,” Geldof said at a London press conference with Midge Ure. “Mothers can’t comfort their children in their dying hours. Lovers can’t cradle each other. Wives can’t hold their husbands’ hands. People are chased down the streets because of it — and it could come our way,” Geldof said. According to the World Health Organization, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa has killed over 5,000 people. The number of infected cases registered worldwide has increased to more than 13,000 with no vaccination in site to help prevent the deadly virus. The Inquisitr previously reported Ebola predictions from those in the scientific community estimating that there could be anywhere from one to 130 additional cases in the United States by year’s end.
The vocals for “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” will be recorded this Saturday at Sarm Studios in London, where the original version was recorded. The lyrics have been updated slightly to reflect the current times of the Ebola crisis. The Band Aid 30 cast will again feature a few artists from the first version including Bono of U2. Other musical artists volunteering their talents include Adele, Chris Martin of Coldplay, One Direction, Bastille, Queen drummer Roger Taylor, Ed Sheeran, Ellie Goulding, Sinead O’Connor and others. Once recorded, the single will be available for download on November 17.
Band Aid’s efforts in 1984 inspired other countries to follow in their footsteps to raise money for the same cause. The United States countered the following year with the super group USA for Africa. The anthem song, “We Are The World” was co-written by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie and recorded in a day by an all star ensemble that featured Bruce Springsteen, Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, Kenny Rogers and others.
Geldof also said there would be French, German and US versions featuring artists from those countries.