Arts & Entertainment

Music world unites to demand equality, defend the planet

By Helen Cook

New York City, US, Sep 26 (EFE).- The music world came together on Saturday to highlight the imperative need to end hunger and defend the planet with Global Citizen Live, a 24-hour global event in which more than 70 artists performed in 15 cities.

In New York City, Coldplay, Billie Eilish, Jennifer Lopez and Paul Simon, among others, sang to a 60,000-strong crowd.

Cindy Lauper performed “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” and “True Colors,” which she dedicated to the women and girls of Afghanistan, although her voice was drowned by the instruments.

Although most people had come to Central Park to see their favorite artists perform, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle also created a stir when they appeared on stage to call for equality in the distribution of Covid-19 vaccines.

“While in this country and many others, you can go almost anywhere and get vaccinated, billions of people around the world cannot,” Markle told the tens of thousands of people gathered at the iconic park.

“This year, the world’s expected to produce enough doses to meet the target of vaccinating 70 percent of people in every single country. But it is wrong that so much of the vaccine supply has only gone to just 10 wealthy nations so far, and not everyone else. It’s just not OK,” she added.

In line with the theme of a united world, British band Coldplay, one of the biggest draws, performed with several artists, including Zambian singer Esther Chungu, who sang “Jehovah.”

They also performed their new single “My Universe,” a collaboration with star K-pop group BTS, as well as some of their classics, including “Yellow” and “Clocks,” which was joined by acclaimed Chinese pianist Lang Lang.

Billie Eilish delighted fans with hits from her first album such as “Bad Guy,” “My Future,” as well as from her recent album “Happier than Ever.”

One of music’s hottest couples, Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes, also thrilled the audience by performing their hit duet “Señorita,” while Jennifer Lopez delighted her hometown with hits including “Jenny From the Block,” “My Love Don’t Cost a Thing” and “If You Had My Love.”

A surprise addition was Paul Simon, former member of folk duo Simon & Garfunkel, who sang two of his greatest hits with former partner Art Garfunkel, “The Boxer” and “The Sound of Silence.”

Concerts were also held in Paris, Los Angeles, London, Lagos, Rio de Janeiro, Sydney, Bombay, Seoul, Las Vegas, Johannesburg, Madrid and Buenos Aires, among others, with performances by Elton John, Stevie Wonder, Duran Duran, and Femi Kuti.

The mega concert, held within the framework of the UN General Assembly, also urged the world’s richest nations to fulfill their promise of donating $100 billion per year before COP26, to be held in Scotland in November, for vulnerable countries to tackle the climate crisis.

In addition, the world’s richest citizens and the G7 countries, comprising the world’s largest advanced economies, were also urged to contribute $6 billion to feed 41 million people at extreme risk of famine and to distribute at least 1 billion vaccines to countries in need. EFE


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