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Live Earth London: David Gray and Damien Rice unite

Damien Rice

Review by Jack Foley

I GUESS you could call it a super-group of sorts – but Damien Rice and David Gray united for a three-song acoustic set at London’s Wembley Stadium as part of the Live Earth concert.

Performing on an outstretched arm of the stage that put them among the crowd, a bearded Gray kicked things off with a rousing acoustic version of his classic hit Babylon, encouraging fans to sing along as he bobbed his head in trademark boisterous fashion.

And then Rice followed up with one of his most popular hits The Blower’s Daughter.

The highlight of the set, however, was a feisty version of Que Sera Sera that had been specially re-written to include lyrics that were reflected the themes of the day.

Both Gray and Rice seemed to take relish in singing lyrics that mentioned “cutting down forests and spreading disease” and posed questions such as “will we be bitter, filled with regret, will we be choking on our own shit?”

The emotive lyrics were, of course, made all the more sobering by the unchanged lyric of “the future’s not ours to see”. If Al Gore’s series of concerts have their way, the world’s population could yet have a part to play.

Speaking to the BBC after the set, Gray attributed the on-stage pairing to mutual friends, while Rice urged concert organisers to do more to make gigs more eco-friendly.

He acknowledged the difficulty of being a musician and touring extensively with being serious about spreading the green message – but hoped that more could (and would) be done.

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