Watch 16 Hours of Historic Live Aid Performances: Queen, Led Zeppelin, Neil Young & Much More

12 pm — 2 pm | Wem­b­ley Sta­di­um, Lon­don

As Live Aid geared up for its momen­tous series of con­certs of both sides of the Atlantic, famous con­cert pro­mot­er Bill Gra­ham com­pared it to Wood­stock: “What we’re doing now is entire­ly dif­fer­ent. The rea­son for the event is more impor­tant than the event itself.”

Three decades lat­er, the mem­o­ry of the event has eclipsed its rea­son (and one Queen per­for­mance has eclipsed most of the con­cert). It was a gath­er­ing of the best of main­stream ‘80s rock–still try­ing to jus­ti­fy itself along­side acts from the 60s and the ‘70s–and the zenith of the fundrais­ing telethon: broad­cast live in 140 coun­tries to raise $50 mil­lion for vic­tims of a relent­less African famine. (Fun fact: the con­certs raised about $560 mil­lion in 2019 mon­ey, about two days’ worth of Jeff Bezos’ cur­rent earn­ings!)

If you have a day to spare, you can recre­ate that amaz­ing July 13th in 1985 with this series of YouTube playlists.

The day start­ed at Lon­don’s Wem­b­ley Sta­di­um (up top), with the Reg­i­men­tal Band of the Cold­stream Guards per­form­ing the Roy­al Salute for Queen and Coun­try and all that, and then things real­ly start­ed with Sta­tus Quo, those griz­zled ol’ blokes play­ing “Rockin’ All Over the World.” Yanks might have said “who?” but it was the Brits who either bopped along or said, “Not this bloody Dad rock!” (Okay, not true, the phrase hadn’t been invent­ed, but some­thing sim­i­lar was uttered.)

2 pm — 4 pm | Wem­b­ley Sta­di­um, Lon­don

The British side was indeed a mixed bag, reflect­ing the idio­syn­crasies of its own sin­gles chart com­pared to the more stead­fast Amer­i­can charts. Elvis Costel­lo sang “All You Need Is Love”; the Style Coun­cil sang their hits; Nik Ker­shaw played his chart-top­per. Phil Collins per­formed “Against All Odds,” then jumped on a Con­corde for New York, arriv­ing to sing it again for a dif­fer­ent audi­ence.

4 pm — 6 pm | Wem­b­ley Sta­di­um, Lon­don

There’s so much more to explore in these playlists: the Led Zep­pelin reunion, The Cars at the height of their pow­ers (RIP Ric Ocasek), Neil Young (and his reunion with Cros­by, Stills, and Nash), Bob Dylan, The Four Tops, Run D.M.C., the list real­ly goes on and on.

6 pm — 8 pm | Wem­b­ley Sta­di­um, Lon­don

8 pm — 10 pm | Wem­b­ley Sta­di­um, Lon­don

2 pm — 5 pm | John F. Kennedy Sta­di­um, Philadel­phia

5 pm — 8 pm | John F. Kennedy Sta­di­um, Philadel­phia

8 pm — 11 pm | John F. Kennedy Sta­di­um, Philadel­phia

Live Aid | 11 pm- 2 am | John F. Kennedy Sta­di­um, Philadel­phia

Live Aid | 2 am — 4 am | John F. Kennedy Sta­di­um, Philadel­phia

Find a com­plete list of Live Aid per­for­mances here.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Watch Queen’s Stun­ning Live Aid Per­for­mance: 20 Min­utes Guar­an­teed to Give You Goose Bumps (July 13, 1985)

Bob Geld­of Talks About the Great­est Day of His Life, Step­ping on the Stage of Live Aid, in a Short Doc by Errol Mor­ris

A Stun­ning Live Con­cert Film of Queen Per­form­ing in Mon­tre­al, Dig­i­tal­ly Restored to Per­fec­tion (1981)

Ted Mills is a free­lance writer on the arts who cur­rent­ly hosts the artist inter­view-based FunkZone Pod­cast and is the pro­duc­er of KCR­W’s Curi­ous Coast. You can also fol­low him on Twit­ter at @tedmills, read his oth­er arts writ­ing at and/or watch his films here.

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