Thursday Night Music Byte
The Concert for Kampuchea (subtitled “Rock for Kampuchea”) is a musical film from the best of the Concerts for the People of Kampuchea. The film was directed by Keith McMillan and was 4 nights of concerts in 1979 at Hammersmith Odeon to raise money for the victims of Pol Pot’s reign of terror in Cambodia. The event was organized by Paul McCartney and Kurt Waldheim (who was then Secretary-General of the U.N.), and it involved well-established artists such as McCartney, The Who and Queen as well as younger punk and new wave acts like The Clash and the Pretenders. The film finishes with the presentation of Wings’ Rockestra (more than 25 musicians playing together).
Rockestra was a Paul McCartney-led supergroup of at least thirty English rockers. The credited list appears at the bottom of the back cover of the LP. The name was first given to an assemblage of famous rock stars that were brought together by McCartney for the final Wings album, 1979’s Back to the Egg. The supergroup—which consisted of Wings, John Paul JonesJohn Bonham of Led Zeppelin, David Gilmour from Pink Floyd, Ronnie Lane of The Faces, Kenney Jones and Pete Townshend of The Who, and Hank Marvin of The Shadows—recorded two McCartney compositions, the instrumental “Rockestra Theme” and “So Glad to See You Here.”
McCartney and Kurt Waldheim re-assembled Rockestra for the concerts for the people of Cambodia (also known as Kampuchea), suffering from the reign of Pol Pot. This time, Rockestra consisted of, among others, Wings, John Paul Jones, John Bonham, Robert Plant, Rockpile, James Honeyman-Scott and Pete Townshend. Regarding the large assemblage of musicians at the concert and in the Rockestra ensemble, Pete Townsend of The Who said it best: “When Paul McCartney calls and asks you to participate in a charitable concert, no one on earth can say, no.”
This is a video clip of the Rockestra band palying the Rockestra Theme.