Put the kids to bed..

This post is Rated R, so if you are easily offended, turn back now. Normally I try to reign in the language, etc., but all bets are off today. You've been warned.

So I'm watching Live 8, the sequel concert to Live Aid. The original was a benefit for Africa, organized by Bob Geldof, who I best know as Pink in Pink Floyd's The Wall. Geldof and U2's Bono put this new one together, not as a benefit, but as an educational tool. They feel that if millions and millions of people realize that there is a problem in Africa, then we can force our leaders to act.

I don't fault their reasoning, or their sentiment, but I do feel that their ultimate goal of eliminating poverty is impossible. There will always be poverty, just as there will always be a privileged upper class. If we reach a state where everyone is equal, and no one is starving, and everyone is happy, it will be at the expense of personal freedom and responsibility, as well as the death of the upper class. Which I don't see happening.

But that's just me. I applaud their efforts, and I looked forward to watching a day full of great performances.

That's not what I got.

What I got was maybe 10 complete performances over a 5 hour span, the rest being highlights, crowd interviews, video packages and commercials.

MTV and VH1 both aired the concert, but basically the same exact feed. Since there were 9 seperate venues, the should have had 9 channels of feed. Put London on VH1, and Philly on MTV, and put the rest on MTV2, MTV Hits, Fuse, VH1 Classic, BET and eith CMT or GAC. Let the viewer decide where they want to watch, and as artists change over at different venues, let you hosts talk about the issues, and show videos about the problem. That's how you do something like this. I remember somewhat when Woodstock 94 or 99 was around, there were several channels to choose from, maybe even pay per view.

Instead of my brilliant idea, MTV dropped the ball, and fucked up big time.

They didn't show complete performances.
They interrupted performances to provide analysis and interview the crowd.
They showed the same video package over and over again.

I was beginning to think the network was "getting it" by not doing anything during their set, and the reunited Floyd was amazing to watch, as they busted out "Us and Them", "Money", "Wish You Were Here" (which made me cry), and "Comfortably Numb." But as "Numb" wound down, but while they were still playing, the host said "Well, there you go! Pink Floyd reuniting after more than 20 years!" and went on to ramble about some homemade T-shirts he saw in the crowd.


I literally yelled that last piece at the TV, even though I was in my apartment, alone.

That was just an amazing moment for me, and for some jackass to cut in to throw to commercial, while the band was STILL PERFORMING was just infuriating.

The same treatment applied not only to Pink Floyd, but to such rock visionaries as Sir Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Elton John and U2, and established acts like Dave Matthews Band, The Killers, Joss Stone and Alicia Keys. The only act that even got as much airtime as Pink Floyd was the fabled Linkin Park/Jay-Z collaboration.

This is not fucking TRL, okay? If you want people to be affected by the performances, and messages of the artists, then show the performances, uninterrupted, and run a ticker across the bottom of the screen with information on what the viewer can do to help.

Constantly breaking in and telling us to do shit isn't going to work for me. I want to see the bands, not listen to some talking head tell me what the highlights of the day were.

As I'm watching right now, they showed the Black Eyed Peas performing "Get Up, Stand Up" with Steven and Rita Marley, and they cut THAT off. What the hell is wrong with these people?

MTV comes off looking greedy and ignorant in this situation. How much ad revenue would they have lost if they had gone commercial-free for 8 hours? Or let a sponsor put their logo in the MTV logo spot in the corner of the screen.

So, in closing, MTV is a piece of shit.

Sorry mom.


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