Paul McCartney leads music legends in 'Love Song to the Earth'
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Stars led by Paul McCartney have released a song to push for strong action on climate change, in the latest effort by artists after plans for global concerts fell through.
"Love Song to the Earth," unveiled on Wednesday, comes less than three months before highly anticipated UN-led talks open in Paris with the aim of reaching a long-term agreement to control rising temperatures and their destructive impact on the planet.
Over a melody typical of mainstream Western pop, a succession of stars sing verses about the Earth that include, "Looking down from up on the moon / It's a tiny blue marble / Who'd have thought the ground we stand on could be so fragile?"
Besides Beatles legend McCartney, stars who lent their voices included rocker Jon Bon Jovi, folk-pop singer Sheryl Crow, acclaimed Beninese singer Angelique Kidjo and Jamaican rapper Sean Paul.
English pop singer Natasha Bedingfield, who also participated, said that the message was for people to take care of the planet rather than turn a blind eye.
"With this song we wanted to talk about the environment in a way that would help people feel empowered to do something rather than be paralyzed by fear," she said in a statement.
The song, along with a video that features nature scenes and children holding up placards with slogans, went live Wednesday on Apple Music and will go on general sale on Friday.
Proceeds will benefit the UN Foundation and the US arm of Friends of the Earth, which have both campaigned actively for action against climate change.
Youtube video of the song
The effort by the musicians comes after plans for "Live Earth" concerts -- which had been billed to take place on each inhabited continent on June 18 -- failed to materialize.
Former US vice president and environmental activist Al Gore and "Happy" singer Pharrell Williams had announced the concerts at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January.
Despite an active social media presence, Live Earth never announced performers. It later said there a free show on September 19 near the Eiffel Tower in Paris instead of the planned concerts.
But several sources said that Paris concert would not take place either.
The Climate Reality Project, a non-profit group founded by Gore, said it was merging the Live Earth concert with "24 Hours of Reality," an online event on November 13-14 that will feature speakers on the challenges of climate change.
Several musicians are launching events on their own to press for a strong outcome in Paris.
Thom Yorke, the frontman of alternative rock giants Radiohead, and punk godmother Patti Smith are among artists who will take part in a concert and discussion in Paris on December 4.
The following day, French disco artist Marc Cerrone plans a dance party on the Champs-Elysees where he will put on his hit 1977 work "Supernature."
"The star is going to be the planet," Cerrone told AFP in Paris.
Paris is the most anticipated climate conference since the 2009 summit in Copenhagen, but experts warn that commitments by major economies are still below levels needed to prevent the worst impacts of climate change.
French President Francois Hollande warned Monday that a deal hinged on rich nations making firmer financial commitments to hardest-hit poor countries.
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