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The "We Are The World" Recording Was The Greatest Collection Of Talent Ever In One Studio

While perusing my Roku channels for the latest movie/show to put on and hope I don't shut off within the first 10 minutes, I noticed a 52 minute doc about the making of one of the biggest musical sensations of all time, the song "We Are The World". 

For those not familiar, it was a song released to raise money for famine in Africa and was performed by the largest collection of all-world musical talent ever put into one recording studio, the dynamic supergroup known as U.S.A. For Africa. The results, to the surprise of no one, were smashing. 

Even though it was about such an awful subject, the diversity of aritsts, styles, and distinctive vocals made "We Are The World" a monster hit. Going from one unique voice to another then another and then yet another just didn't get old. Because everybody fucking brought it. If you turned on the radio, it was on. If you put MTV on, the video was airing. And it seemed like nobody ever got sick of it because it slapped more than Moe Howard. 

Why was that? I mean, look at this goddamn roster that the legendary Quincy Jones conducted.

  • Harry Belafonte
  • Lindsey Buckingham
  • Kim Carnes
  • Ray Charles
  • Bob Dylan
  • Sheila E.
  • Hall and Oates
  • James Ingram
  • Michael Jackson
  • Al Jarreau
  • Waylon Jennings
  • Billy Joel
  • Cyndi Lauper
  • Huey Lewis
  • Kenny Loggins
  • Bette Midler
  • Willie Nelson
  • Jeffery Osborne
  • Steve Perry
  • The Pointer Sisters
  • Lionel Richie
  • Smokey Robinson
  • Kenny Rogers
  • Diana Ross
  • Paul Simon
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Tina Turner
  • Dionne Warwick
  • Stevie Wonder

Ray Charles. Bruce Springsteen. Cyndi Lauper. MJ. Tina Turner. Bob Dylan. Smokey Robinson. It was not only incredible that they got every performer (and ego) on the same page but that organizers managed to keep it on the down low.

Rolling Stone had a minute-by-minute breakdown a few weeks ago and it has some cool tidbits in it. 

That Lewis-to-Lauper-to-Carnes-back-to-Lauper for the 'yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah!' still gives me chills.

The Ray solo is unreal.

The back-and-forth with the Boss and Stevie is epic.

If you want to kill an hour and see some musical GOATs, here ya go.

P.S. While up at STATE, I participated in a remake of this video in the mid-'90s for some school promotion and crushed the Springsteen part. I would pay up to $175 for a copy of it right now (looking at you, English/Communications Department at North Adams State College).