posted on May 28, 2007 23:19
In other ways China is increasingly plugging into the worldwide concert network.
The seven-continent Live Earth concert series which begins in Sydney, Australia, will hit Shanghai as well as Tokyo before going on to South Africa – count the carbon footprint of all those jet-flying tour crews. Part of a campaign led by the Al Gore-connected
Alliance for Climate Protection and other NGOs. Gore is a “Partner” of the Live Earth concert, language which makes the whole venture sound suspiciously like a corporate convention. Here’s more corporate speak: “Live Earth is being produced globally by Control Room, the firm led by Kevin Wall which has “produced and distributed” more than 60 concerts since its founding in 2005 featuring Beyonce, Madonna, Green Day and the Rolling Stones, among others. Is this Control Room’s way of dipping its toe into the China market? Interestingly, there’s a law in China which forbids artists performing on benefit gigs from getting paid. So while Al Gore’s connections may facilitate the mountain of licenses you need for a gig like this in China it’s going to be very interesting to see if and how the concert will make any money here. Considering that the currently very hot Linkin Park are scheduled to play, there will have to be money involved. The band has long had ambitions to play China, where it has a sizeable following, but will Live Earth be a repeat of the Great Wall concert a few year ago, at which ever-hot Alicia Keys and Cyndi Lauper played a disastrously under-attended and badly organized show in a stunning location? The money was supposed to come from the TV rights but quality issues mean that never got aired, and several lawsuits are apparently winding their way through US courts over fees and broken promises. I remember the Great Wall concert as much for catching the last acts sitting in one of the empty VIP armchairs up front - they emptied of invited Communist Party bigwigs and Army brass as the night wore on and got colder – so we wrapped up in the blankets provided and rued our paying 40 euros for the tickets when we could have picked up one of hundreds at the gate for about 5 euros. Tread carefully, Live Earth…More ...