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Living Live Earth New York: The Show

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Live Earth NY, Al Gore. Photo Credit Stephan Wittig

What a glorious day it was. When I was planning my trip to Live Earth, rain was predicted for the big 07.07.07. In reality, we couldn’t have asked for a nicer day. For 8 hours, artists entered and exited the rotating stage that was covered in tires. Each group typically performed only 3 songs – sometimes leaving fans wanting much more, and others creating a space in which one could finally get in the bathroom line.

Most of the groups had something to say about the reason we were all there. Melissa Etheridge really took her time to drive home both an anti-war & environmental message. I thought she gave an incredible performance, others found it overly preachy. In fact, favorite performances depend on who you talk to. Personally, Bon Jovi was my ultimate…and I thought it would be Dave or John Mayer.

But was the message there?


Did the crowd feel the eco-reasoning behind all of this?

Hmmm. Sometimes.

Zach Braff @ Live Earth. Photo Credit: Johnia!It was definitely a stadium full of Gore lovers. Each and every time he stepped out on stage, people stood up and cheered. They listened to him. People also paid attention to Leo, and Zack Braff walked out there and spoke as if speaking to Giants Stadium was as easy and as casual as his living room (and reminded us all that we were in New Jersey, NOT New York!). The guys in particular paid attention to Cameron Diaz.

Not everyone received the same attention, however. The model with “one brain cell” was really an odd choice as a presenter. And unfortunately, Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s speech was way too long for the crowd’s attention.

The celebrity based PSA’s that were given so much hype were very much on the “chill” side. I think they could have been much more entertaining. I understand this is a serious issue, but we’re here and we’re trying to get people’s attention…take advantage of that. Instead, the PSA’s became a time when “the wave” would take over the stands. The short film “Cow”, on the other hand, was ummm…two minutes and thirty seconds of animals pooing in an effort to convince everyone to go vegetarian on Tuesdays.

The later on in the day it got, the less people wanted to hear the mini-speeches. It was quite a lot, and was beginning to sound like a telethon.

Kelly Clarkson @ Live Earth. Photo credit: jeffpulverHowever, I think many people DID get the message. Maybe they learned was is compostable (through Pepsi’s trash police set up at every bin). Maybe one celebrity or artist said something that particularly rang true to them. (That’s the benefit of having so many voices.) Maybe they decided to “Answer the Call” and sign the 7 point pledge.

The crowd was a mixed one. Most people were in their 20s, and many wore clothing that shows that they were already on the eco-path. Others were probably there just to hear some of their favorite bands play. For the already green, this concert was a treat, a celebration. For the others, hopefully it will serve as an awakening.

And if celebrities and musicians learned to be greener throughout this process, even better. Kelly Clarkson said to the crowd that she’d learned a lot that day. If these people in the public eye continue on the path to greening their lives, their tours, their movie sets…then this tidal wave of eco-consciousness is only just beginning.

Thanks to Stephan Wittig & Flickr’s Johnia! and jeffpulver for photos.

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