‘We Are the World’ to be Played Worldwide
Undated (AP) _ A simultaneous broadcast Friday of the famine relief record ″We Are the World″ by hundreds of radio stations worldwide should help ″bring to light the fact that there is a problem of hunger,″ a sponsor says.
The Good Friday broadcast, set for 10:50 a.m. EST, was inspired by stations in Georgia and Utah and is being aided by some major networks.
″We Are The World″ was recorded by 46 U.S. stars who donated their time. Proceeds from sales of the record are going to USA for Africa, a non-profit organization founded by the performers to aid famine-stricken Africa.
The reason for the call for a global broadcast is to ″get the point across that we really are the world,″ said Bob Wolfe of WROM-AM in Rome Ga. He and Don Briscar of WKCX-FM, in the same city, and Jim Mickelson, program director of KZAN in Ogden, Utah, are urging the simulateous broadcast.
Stations across the United States, Canada and Europe, including East Germany, have agreed to participate, Wolfe and Briscar said.
Bob Castle, chief of the radio division at Armed Forces Network, which has 400 stations on land and sea around the world, said Tuesday the network won’t broadcast the song, but ″we have advised our stations that they can broadcast it if they choose.″ He said they all have copies of the record.
Voice of America also will play the record at 10:50 a.m., although at that time of day it is beaming only to the Mideast and southern Asia, said spokeswoman Regina Brown. She said VOA will play it at other times to various regions.
USA for Africa supports the efforts, said spokeswoman Wendy Ferris, and put Wolfe and Briscar in contact with the music trade magazine Radio and Records, which is helping the project.
″We anticipate or hope that about 5,000 radio stations around the country will participate,″ magazine spokesman Harvey Melnick said Tuesday in Los Angeles.
″NBC has agreed to feed it on their satellite distribution. England, Australia, Canada, West Germany - which is interesting, because they’re going to do a simultaneous translation ... while they play the record - Hawaii, Alaska.″
″The young man in Ogden, Utah, at KZAN and the folks in Rome, Ga., ... were really the guys who initiated the thought of putting together the simultaneous broadcast,″ said Melnick, whose magazine last Friday publicized the project. ″We have just served as kind of the hub of the wheel.″
Mickelson said he had been working on the project since March 12.
″The whole reason why we want this done is to expose as many people as possible, not only in the United States, but across the globe, and hopefully it’ll stir their emotions and bring to light the fact that there is a problem of hunger, both in Ethiopia and here in the United States,″ Mickelson said. ″The radio industry and the radio medium is very powerful, and we want to do our part.″
Briscar and Wolfe said they began their effort to organize the worldwide simulcast by accident. Two days before the official start of spring, they inadvertently played the record at the same time on both Rome radio stations.
Then they got over 200 stations in the South to play it at the same time on the first day of spring, March 20, and decided to try going international.