Thursday, February 10, 2011

"Tears Are Not Enough" by Northern Lights

On this day in 1985 the juggernaut of charity singles for African famine relief swept through the Canadian music industry when its brightest lights formed Northern Lights in order to record Tears Are Not Enough in the footsteps* of Band Aid's Do They Know It's Christmas? in the United Kingdom, and USA for Africa's We Are the World in America.

Featuring solos by Gordon Lightfoot, Burton Cummings, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Bryan Adams, Corey Hart, Bruce Cockburn, Geddy Lee - and that bitch Anne Murray too! - in world terms, the song represents a veritable Who's That of music, although in Canada of course they were (and, indeed, are) all major stars - thanks as much to their prodigious talents as to federally regulated content guidelines which are one of this country's greatest cultural achievements.

With glowing hearts we saw them rise to the occasion, and of the three songs, this one is the only one that still gives me chills - although probably that's because, in pop cultural terms, many of those involved are the most obscure.

*And, mainly according to Canadian pundits, the shadows...
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