We Are The World - USA For Africa


In the mid-80s there was a musical event in the US organized to provide relief for poverty-stricken parts of Africa. The fruits of their labor, musically, was the song “We Are The World”.

The list of musical stars featured in this song was staggering. Among others the song featured:

Michael Jackson (Thriller, Billy Jean, Beat It, etc.)
Bob Dylan (60s icon)
Ray Charles (Georgia… Georgiaaaa)
Tina Turner (Simply The Best)
Bruce Springsteen (Born In The USA, My Hometown, Streets of Philadelphia)
Stevie Wonder (I Just Called to Say I Love You, That’s What Friends Are For)
Cyndi Lauper (True Colors, Time After Time)
Billy Joel (Uptown Girl, She’s Got a Way, The Piano Man, She’s Always a Woman)
Lionel Richie (Hello, Dancing on the Ceiling, Endless Love)
Paul Simon (The Sound of Silence, Call Me Al, Bridge Over Troubled Water)
Kenny Rogers (Lady, She Believes In Me, The Gambler)
Willie Nelson (You Were Always On My Mind, On The Road Again, writer of “Crazy”)
Kenny Loggins (Danger Zone, Footloose)
Steve Perry of Journey (Faithfully, Open Arms, Wheel in the Sky)
Huey Lewis (The Power of Love, The Heart of Rock and Roll, Jacob’s Ladder)
Daryll Hall of Hall & Oates (Out of Touch, Private Eyes)
Dionne Warwick (lots of 70s stuff & That’s What Friends Are For)

For anyone who grew up in the 80s, you know about which I speak.

But many here may be too young to remember this song. If you ever wondered about the pop stars of the past, WATCH THE VIDEO!

Go to YouTube and search for “We Are The World”.

It is free and they won’t fill your email inbox with spam.

If you want to know who’s who, ask me or look up the names online to see their pictures.

I especially like the end, which features a duet between Stevie Wonder and Bruce Springsteen (what vocal contrast!) and Ray Charles at the very end.



How about those of us who were already grown up in the 80s? :lol:
Thanks for the trip down memory lane and the suggestion to check out YouTube. That is a fantastic song and fantastic collection of performers.

Didn’t “Band Aid” basically inspire that – along with some other “aid” concerts? I remember going to a “Farm Aid” concert in Austin, Texas in 1986. I think Willy Nelson organized that one.


I think We Are The World was in 84 or 85.

And do you remember “Hands Across America”, a similar effort?

We need another one of those… maybe this time with people like Beyonce Knowles, Chris Brown, the guy from Coldplay, James Hetfield of Metallica, Whitney Houston (if she still has any teeth after her crack addiction), Bobby Brown, Peter Cetera, Bono, Madonna, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood, Mariah Carey.

You know what, my friend?

I’m going to write a hit song and shop it to the Nashville publishers/labels with the idea that it will bring in multiple stars and benefit the world. Yes! YES! That is exactly what I’m going to do.

Say No To Oil
by Tom Safford

Performed by the ESL Gang for Developing Countries


(but seriously, I will write the song and try to get it done)


So Mba, I need a rap interlude to be performed by someone like Kanye or Eminem or TI. It has to be clean (no swearing) but hip and meaningful. Make it in 4:4 time please.

one-two-three-four one-two-three-four (4:4 time)

If anyone wants to chip in, holler here. Let’s write a song.

If it’s published, recorded and marketed, we’ll spread the wealth, which would make our new president happy.

(I had to get in a dig. hehe)

Alan, Ralf, Mr. Micawber, Amy, TD, Conchita (we could use a Spanish line for Enrique Iglesias to sing), Michael, Nina, etc… if the spirit moves you, please add a line or two.

Love Is Ours To Share

Key: G

Walking downtown I pass a store with a TV in it
And I glance for a second… then I turn around and walk away
When I get home I look at my kids and then it hits me
Were those people on TV as lucky as me?

It’s time we got together for a gathering of hearts
Loose the bond, lend the hand, give them what they need
Till the wounded spirit, plant the seed

Because love is ours to share
There is no limit to what we can bring
Love is universal… take it to the needy lands
Let’s give them what they need and stand together and sing
For a better world, because
Love is ours to share.

Okay, I need a second verse (4 lines), a second refrain (3 lines), Mba’s rap, and a powerful 2-line bridge.

Who wants to pitch in?


I’m going to be the fuddy-duddy here, but that extremely inspiring performance was meant to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. It raised plenty, but when the food got to Ethiopia, the government there refused to let it be distributed, and it rotted on the docks. You see, they had deliberately engineered the famine to starve out their regional opposition. In fact, they even sold some food to Egypt for weapons.

That was one of the big disappointments for many people who were young in the 1980s and put their hopes in projects like this. Their noble intentions ran smack into reality.

But we got a good song out of it.

Not long after that, there was some kind of fundraising drive called “Hands Across America”, where they produced a similar song and tried to stage an event where millions of people held hands to form a human chain all across the continent. President Reagan was demonized, because he didn’t participate. Over $14 million was raised, but almost none of it went to the intended charity. The majority of it went to salaries and “administration”.


And that is why we can’t just throw money at hunger… dropping a bag of food doesn’t guarantee that it’ll reach its intended destination.