Geldof Announces Live 8

London’s Hyde Park, Circus Maximus in Rome and the Museum of Art in Philadelphia are among the venues for Live 8, a series of concerts being organized by Bob Geldof, the driving force behind the 1985 Band Aid and Live Aid campaigns for African famine relief.

The July 2 concerts, which will be free, also will be held near the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin and in Paris.

“We don’t want people’s money. We want them,” Geldof told a news conference May 31st. He said negotiations for the Paris venue were continuing.

Performers will include Coldplay, Madonna, Paul McCartney, R.E.M. and U2 in London; Will Smith, Bon Jovi, Dave Matthews Band, Stevie Wonder and Sean “P. Diddy” Combs in Philadelphia; Crosby, Stills & Nash, Lauryn Hill and Brian Wilson in Berlin; Jamiroquai, Youssou N’Dour, Yannick Noah and Placebo in Paris; and Duran Duran in Rome.

The events are aimed at raising awareness of poverty in developing countries just days before G8 leaders meet in Britain.

Geldof said the G8 meeting provided a “unique opportunity for Britain to do something unparalleled in the world … to tilt the world a little bit on its axis in favor of the poor.”

Elton John, who sat beside Geldof at the news conference, said he was very proud to be involved.”

“Now I’m fully aware of what’s going on and seeing the injustices going on,” John said. The 58-year-old pop star said he hadn’t been mature enough to appreciate the last concert 20 years ago and its ramifications.

— Associated Press