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The top events that transformed live music

The past 50 years has featured some truly monumental live music events that had a massive impact when they were staged.

Each of them was watched by at least one billion people worldwide – highlighting how music has the power to attract massive audiences.

We take a closer look at the four televised events that transformed live music and left a legacy that laid the foundations for the genre to flourish.

Elvis: Aloha From Hawaii – 1973 

Anyone who enjoys playing online slots will probably be familiar with the impact Elvis Presley had on gambling destination Las Vegas during the early 1970s.

His long-running residency at the International Hotel was unheard of in the music industry and cemented his status as one of the world’s finest live performers.

Presley’s widespread appeal was further highlighted in 1973 when one-quarter of the global population tuned in to watch his concert in Honolulu.

He became the first solo performer to be broadcast live via satellite across the world in a show that cost $2.5 million to produce.

Live Aid – 1985

When it comes to transcending geographical borders, no live TV event comes close to challenging Live Aid in July 1985.

Held simultaneously in London and Philadelphia, Live Aid was staged with the aim of raising much-needed funds for the relief of Ethiopian famine.

The world united like never before, with nearly two people in every five on the planet tuning in to watch some of the most iconic music performances in history.

Freddie Mercury and Queen undoubtedly stole the show at Wembley Stadium, producing a mind-blowing 21-munute set the blew the audience away.

The Wall: Live in Berlin – 1990

The fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 as the Cold War began to thaw in Eastern Europe was one of the most symbolic moments in history.

Just eight months later, Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters commemorated the event with an epic performance of his band’s 11th studio album, The Wall.

Around 350,000 people attended the concert at the Potsdamer Platz, while another one billion tuned in to live broadcasts.

Among the superstar line-up Waters performed with during the show were Bryan Adams, Cyndi Lauper and Joni Mitchell.

Live 8 – 2005

Twenty years after Live Aid attempted to change lives in Africa, the format was revived with the aim of getting world leaders to pledge money to global poverty.

Ten music concerts were staged on this occasion and were watched by a whopping two billion people – 31% of the global population.

Live 8 was time to coincide with G8 conference held in Gleneagles, Scotland, and delivered a positive result as world leaders agreed to significantly increase aid to poorer countries.

U2 and Paul McCartney opened the London concert, while Green Day, Neil Young and Pet Shop Boys were other notable acts who performed elsewhere.

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