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16 April 2013

The Human Rights Concerts - Highlights

Amnesty International and Eagle Rock Entertainment are proud to announce news of the release on 27 May 2013 of "GET UP! STAND UP! Highlights from The Human Rights Concerts 1986-1998" on DVD and CD [Cat Nos EREDV981 and EDGCD505 respectively]. The "Human Rights Concerts" is the collective title of the series of concerts presented by the Nobel Peace Prize-winning human rights organization Amnesty International in the years 1986-1998.

2013 is the 25th anniversary of the most high-profile of all the concerts in the series - the "Human Rights Now!" world tour. A six-week, five-continent, fifteen-nation, twenty-concert tour of the world in 1988 raising awareness of the cause - headlined by Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Peter Gabriel, Tracy Chapman and Youssou N'Dour. In celebration of this anniversary - and to raise funds for and consciousness of, Amnesty - the films of all the "Human Rights Concerts" in the series have been digitally restored and are to be released in 2013 in DVD, audio and digital formats. "GET UP! STAND UP!" presents highlights from all the concerts and serves to whet the appetite ahead of the full-scale release later this year. Three of the four films have never been available in any format since their one-time-only airings on TV - making the upcoming releases all the more exciting.

The performances on "GET UP! STAND UP!" are drawn from four sets of shows. The first in the series is the grand finale concert of "A Conspiracy Of Hope", Amnesty's 25th anniversary concert tour of the USA in 1986. The second source is the film of the above-referenced historic "Human Rights Now!" world tour undertaken in 1988. The series continued with stand-alone concerts "An Embrace Of Hope" in Chile in 1990 and "The Struggle Continues" in Paris in 1998. The list of musicians who contributed their services is extraordinary and includes some of the world's foremost artists - drawn from several nations and representing a wide range of musical styles. The primary factor uniting them was their desire to donate their time and talents to place a spotlight on Amnesty's crucial work campaigning for people whose human rights are abused.

The release of "GET UP! STAND UP!" in the last week of May coincides with the 52nd anniversary of the creation of Amnesty International. Amnesty dates its genesis to 28th May 1961. That was the date that the UK newspaper, The Observer, published an advocacy article titled "Forgotten Prisoners" by British lawyer Peter Benenson calling for an "amnesty" for political prisoners worldwide. What was initially a one-year campaign mushroomed into a global movement named Amnesty International that now has over 3 million members and supporters.

The "Human Rights Concerts" evolved out of a desire to capitalize and build on the invaluable support for Amnesty in the music community, first manifested in Amnesty's legendary "Secret Policeman's Ball" series of benefit shows, albums and movies beginning in 1976, that had presented musical performances by Pete Townshend, Sting, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Phil Collins, Tom Robinson, Donovan, Midge Ure and Bob Geldof. Those entertainment events were a crucial turning point in Amnesty's strategy of inspiring young people to become active participants in the human rights movement.

A key organizational figure in the first three events of the "Human Rights Concerts" series was Jack Healey, Executive Director of Amnesty International USA between 1981-1993. In the case of the 1986 US tour and 1988 world tour, Healey co-produced with seasoned rock promoter Bill Graham. The 1998 Paris concert was organized by Amnesty planning officer Blair Gibb and Peter Gabriel.

Executive Producers for Amnesty on this project are Amnesty International USA's Claire Schultz (Chief External Affairs Officer) and Stacey Bain (Chief Financial and Administrative Officer/Acting Director).

The "Human Rights Concerts" have been restored and produced for release by longtime Amnesty activist Martin Lewis - who was co-creator (with John Cleese) of Amnesty's "Secret Policeman's Ball" series and co-producer of all the 'Ball' shows, movies, TV specials and albums between 1976-1985. It was Lewis who first instigated Amnesty's outreach to rock musicians by recruiting and producing the above-referenced musicians.

The historic "Human Rights Concerts" brought awareness of the cause to an ever-wider public. These new releases on DVD and CD are designed to continue that mission and raise further funds for Amnesty's ever-vital work. The collected concert set ? titled "?RELEASED!" - will be issued in a DVD box-set in October 2013 throughout the World (except North America) by Eagle Rock. There are also plans to release corresponding audio CDs.

Full Tracklisting Information

From "A Conspiracy Of Hope" (1986)

1) Bob Geldof & Steven Van Zandt ? Redemption Song 2) Third World ? Now That We've Found Love 3) Joan Armatrading ? Love And Affection 4) Ruben Blades (with Carlos Santana & Fela Kuti) ? Muevete 5) Miles Davis ? Speak / That's What Happened 6) Lou Reed ? Walk On The Wild Side 7) Peter Gabriel ? Shock The Monkey 8) Bryan Adams ? Run To You 9) Bryan Adams ? Summer Of '69 10) U2 ? MLK / Pride (In The Name Of Love) 11) U2 ? Sunday Bloody Sunday 12) The Police ? Message In A Bottle 13) The Police ? Every Breath You Take


From "Human Rights Now!" (1988)

14) Tracy Chapman ? Talkin' 'bout A Revolution 15) Peter Gabriel ? Sledgehammer 16) Sting ? Don't Stand So Close To Me 17) Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band ? Born In The USA 18) Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band ? I'm On Fire


From "An Embrace Of Hope" (1990)

19) Inti-Illimani ? Bailando, Bailando 20) Wynton Marsalis ? Jungle Blues 21) Jackson Browne ? Lives In The Balance 22) Sinead O'Connor ? Nothing Compares 2 U


From "The Struggle Continues" (1998)

23) Bruce Springsteen ? No Surrender 24) Tracy Chapman ? Fast Car 25) Alanis Morissette ? Hand In My Pocket 26) Peter Gabriel & Youssou N'Dour ? Shaking The Tree 27) Jimmy Page & Robert Plant ? Rock And Roll 28) Radiohead ? Karma Police 29) Radiohead ? Bones 30) Bruce Springsteen, Peter Gabriel, Tracy Chapman & Youssou N'Dour ? Get Up, Stand Up

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