46 records

Roman Naumachiae

Naumachia (detail), an imaginative recreation by Ulpiano Checa

A naumachia was a mimic sea battle that oftentook place in a constructed basin. These entertainments also took place in flooded amphitheatres. The opposing sides were prisoners of war or convicts, who fought until one side was destroyed.

The earliest naumachia recorded (46 bc) represented an engagement between the Egyptian and Tyrian fleets and was given by Julius Caesar on an artificial lake that was constructed by him in the Campus Martius. In 2 bc Augustus staged a naumachia between Athenians and Persians in a basin newly constructed on the right bank of the Tiber at Rome. In the naumachia arranged by Claudius on Lake Fucino in ad 52, 100 ships and 19,000 men participated.

The introduction of new technologies initially led to an increased number of naumachia. The first three naumachia were spaced about 50 years apart; the following six, most of which took place in amphitheatres, occurred in a space of 30 years. Less costly in material and human terms, they could afford to be staged more frequently. Less grandiose, they became a feature of the games, but could not be considered exceptional. The iconography bears witness to this. Of some twenty representations of a naumachia in Roman art, nearly all are of the Fourth Style, of the time of Nero and the Flavian dynasty.

After the Flavian period, naumachiae disappear from the texts almost completely. Apart from a mention in the Augustan History, a late source of limited reliability, only the town records (fastia) of Ostia tells us that in 109 Trajan inaugurated a naumachia basin.

A later version of the naumachia was practiced in indoor theatres, such as London’s Sadler’s Wells, during the 19th century. A tank was constructed in the pit and stalls areas, and real boats were used for the purpose.

Labor Day 1899

Series: Berryman Political Cartoon Collection, 1896 - 1949Record Group 46: Records of the U.S. Senate, 1789 - 2015

This illustration, “Labor Day 1899”, by cartoonist Clifford Berryman, appeared in the Washington Post on September 4, 1899, shows Uncle Sam and a schoolboy celebrating Labor Day by bowing before a worker sitting among his tools, representing farmers, laborers, and machinists.

Labor Day isn’t just about hot dogs and a day off! This weekend, explore records created or received by the U.S. Government on issues of labor and labor rights: https://www.archives.gov/news/topics/labor-day

On August 28, 1963 a quarter million people came to the nation’s capital to petition their duly elected government in a demonstration known as the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Frustrated by the inaction of a gridlocked Congress, the marchers called for Congress to pass the Civil Rights bill.

This map was presented by the DC Chief of Police during hearings relating to the March on Washington before the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on District of Columbia. The map shows the division of the area surrounding the March grounds into four zones to aid communications and allocations of police manpower.

Hearing on H.R. 7431, Vol. 3, p. 2422-3; Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on the District of Columbia; Records of the U.S. Senate, Record Group 46; National Archives Building, Washington, DC. 


Ernie Terrell, who held a share of the heavyweight boxing championship in the 1960s but was best known for a title bout he lost in 1967 to Muhammad Ali, who taunted him throughout the brutal fight, died Dec. 16 at a Chicago hospital. He was 75.

His death was first reported by the Chicago Sun-Times. He had dementia.

The tall, rangy Mr. Terrell was one of the leading heavyweights of the 1960s, but he was overshadowed throughout his career by the charismatic Ali.In 1964, Ali — then fighting under his original name of Cassius Clay — won the heavyweight championship by defeating Sonny Liston. Soon after that fight, Ali publicly declared his allegiance to the Nation of Islam and asked to be recognized by his Muslim name.

Later that year, the World Boxing Association — one of several sanctioning bodies for boxing — deprived Ali of his heavyweight crown after a contract dispute regarding a rematch with Liston. Mr. Terrell claimed the vacant WBA title on March 5, 1965, by winning a unanimous decision over Eddie Machen.

Mr. Terrell went on to defeat two top contenders, George Chuvalo and Doug Jones, running his record to 39-4.

Nevertheless, most observers considered Ali the true heavyweight champion. Ali went through one opponent after another, delivering a particularly harsh beating to former champion Floyd Patterson in November 1965 after Patterson refused to use Ali’s Muslim name.

Ali and Mr. Terrell agreed to unify the title at the Houston Astrodome on Feb. 6, 1967. The fight came at a time when Ali was under fire from political figures and others for his refusal to be inducted into the Army.

Mr. Terrell had known Ali since they were amateur boxers in the 1950s, and they had once sparred together. Whether out of habit or provocation, Mr. Terrell repeatedly called his opponent “Clay” before their fight. (Most newspapers and magazines at the time also referred to Ali by his earlier name.)

The sensitive issue erupted during a tense pre-fight television interviewconducted by broadcaster Howard Cosell.

“My name is Muhammad Ali, and you will announce it right there in the center of that ring after the fight, if you don’t do it now,” Ali told Mr. Terrell as Cosell stood between them.“You are acting just like another old Uncle Tom, another Floyd Patterson,” Ali continued. “I’m going to punish you.”With the cameras rolling, the two fighters began to remove their jackets and cock their fists before bystanders stepped between them.

“I wasn’t trying to insult him,” Mr. Terrell said in Thomas Hauser’s book, “Muhammad Ali: His Life and Times” (1991). “He’d been Cassius Clay all the time before when I knew him.”

Mr. Terrell thought Ali’s outrage was staged, part of a publicity stunt to promote the fight. But once the bell rang in Houston, it was clear that Ali was not joking. Over and over, he shouted, “What’s my name?” before delivering one damaging blow after another.

In the third round, Mr. Terrell sustained an injury to his left eye that left him with double vision. He stayed on his feet throughout the 15-round fight, but he was crouched over, with his hands covering his face, unable to take advantage of his long reach and 6-foot-6-inch height.

“From the eighth round on, Terrell was virtually helpless,” Hauser wrote in his book. “And from that point on, Ali taunted him mercilessly. Time and again, he shouted, ‘What’s my name,’ and followed with a burst of blows to Terrell’s eyes. ‘Uncle Tom! What’s my name! Uncle Tom! What’s my name!’ ”

Blood oozed down Mr. Terrell’s face, and both eyes were swollen almost shut. Many spectators among the crowd of more than 37,000 called for the fight to be stopped, but the referee, Harry Kessler, did not intervene.

After the bout, which Ali won by unanimous decision, Sports Illustrated writer Tex Maule described it as “a wonderful demonstration of boxing skill and a barbarous display of cruelty.”

Mr. Terrell maintained that Ali illegally gouged his eye early in the fight, causing a blood vessel to burst. Afterward, Mr. Terrell underwent surgery to repair a broken bone under his left eye.

“I’m not apologizing for whipping him,” Ali said at the time. “I’m out to be cruel, that’s what the boxing game is about.”Within months, Mr. Terrell had recovered enough to resume his career, but after losing two fights in succession he temporarily retired.

Ali had one more fight in 1967, a knockout victory over Zora Folley, before he was convicted of draft evasion, and his championship was taken away. He was 27 and at the peak of his abilities, but the undisputed heavyweight champion would not be allowed to box again for more than three years.

Ernest Terrell was born April 4, 1939, near Belzoni, Miss. He was one of 10 children in a sharecropping family that later moved to Chicago.

Mr. Terrell began boxing in his early teens, working as a hotel elevator operator to help pay his gym fees. He was a two-time Golden Gloves amateur champion in Chicago before beginning his professional career in 1957.

He also had a strong interest in music and taught himself to play guitar. He started a band, Ernie Terrell and the Heavyweights, that appeared on “The Ed Sullivan Show” and Johnny Carson’s “Tonight Show” in the 1960s. His sister, Jean Terrell, was part of the group before replacing Diana Ross as lead singer with the Supremes in 1970.

Mr. Terrell returned to the boxing ring in 1970 and fought until 1973, retiring with a record of 46-9. He never had another shot at the heavyweight title.

He worked as a music producer and boxing promoter and, for years, ran a successful janitorial business in Chicago, with hundreds of employees. He twice ran unsuccessfully for alderman in Chicago’s municipal government.

Survivors include his wife of 40 years, Maxine Sibley Terrell of Chicago; two stepchildren; three sisters; and four brothers.

Mr. Terrell was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004. He did not apologize for the dispute that led to the rancor underlying his 1967 fight with Ali.

“We were fighting,” he told USA Today in 2009. “What was I supposed to do, give him Christmas gifts?”

Over time, however, the fighters reconciled and became friendly. In later years, Mr. Terrell always referred to his former opponent as “Ali.”

By Matt Schudel  The Washington Post

“I nominate Thurgood Marshall, of New York, to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.”

Message of President Lyndon B. Johnson Nominating Thurgood Marshall of New York to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, 6/13/1967

Series: Anson McCook Collection of Presidential Signatures, 1789 - 1975Record Group 46: Records of the U.S. Senate, 1789 - 2015 

Thurgood Marshall was nominated as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court by President Lyndon B. Johnson on June 13, 1967. Following his confirmation, Marshall became the first African American to serve on the Supreme Court. His nomination followed a long and distinguished career as a prominent civil rights lawyer, and he argued more than 30 cases before the Supreme Court, including the famous and influential case Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.

Photograph of Thurgood Marshall, 6/13/1967. From Collection: LBJ-WHPO, Johnson White House Photographs. National Archives Identifier: 2803441

John Hejduk. Victims. 1986

John Hejduk’s ‘Victims’ project – an AA publication from 1986. An architectural performance of 67 structures planned over 60 years, on the razed site of a Nazi torture chamber in Berlin, investigating a cryptic and negative architectural representation of loss, memory and the passage of time.

1. Horticulturist; 2. Gardener; 3. Rosewoman; 4. Metalman; 5. Park Attendant; 6. Inhabitants; 7. Drawbridge Man; 8. Trolley Man; 9. Mechanic; 10. Operator; 11. Children JJ; 12. Children SP; 13. Children SB; 14. Children S; 15. Children MGR; 16. Children SP2; 17. Children SS; 18. Children PT; 19. Physician; 20. Nurse; 21. Optometrist; 22. Painter; 23. Musician; 24. Poet; 25. Soloist; 26. Musicians; 27. Dancer; 28. Librarian; 29. Typesetter; 30. Poem; 31. Mask Repairman; 32. Watch Repairman; 33. Paper Restorer; 34. Carpenter; 35. Plumber; 36. Shoe Repairman; 37. Clothman; 38. Crochet Lady; 39. Shade Woman; 40. Security; 41. Researcher; 42. Identity Card Man; 43. Stampman; 44. Accountant; 45. Keeper of the Records; 46. Giver of the Keys; 47. Taker of the Keys; 48. Iceman; 49. Fireman; 50. Zoologist; 51. Butterfly Collector; 52. Catfish; 53. Peacock; 54. People; 55. Child; 56. Judge; 57. Room for Thought; 58. Room of the Innocent; 59. Room for Those Who Looked the Other Way; 60. Passengers; 61. Toll Taker- Toll Taker II; 62. Time Keeper; 63. The Dead; 64. The Travellers; 65. The Exiles; 66. The Disappeared; 67. The Application

Mobile Mail From Maiyan 2016-11-02






Maiyan’s Mobame Translation

Today I had a show recording.

Quite a while since I’ve gotten this tired…

Been working a little too hard!

New uniform(^_^)ノ

“The Lady and the Tiger,” 11/7/1917

Series: Berryman Political Cartoon Collection, 1896 - 1949Record Group 46: Records of the U.S. Senate, 1789 - 2015

This cartoon by Clifford K. Berryman depicts the two big winners on New York’s Election Day, 1917 – Women’s Suffrage, and the Tammany Hall political machine, represented by the Tammany Tiger.   While some states allowed women to vote, no national law guaranteed women that right until the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified in 1920.

Avengers Preference: Kisses

Tony: Pecks

Tony’s a fast guy; he never sits still and he’s always running out the door or onto a quinjet with little time for a proper goodbye. So you’re always close behind, pressing a quick kiss to Tony’s lips as a farewell or a greeting. It makes him smile, a small sense of normalcy in his otherwise hectic world. Tony finds it cute, and somewhat domestic, which is what he loves about it. You use this kiss like a weapon as well, often quickly kissing him to shut him up, or pressing a feather light one to wake him up in the morning. It’s fleeting, but loving, and often times Tony makes a game out of how many you can give him in a day. Your current record is 46, but you’re both willing to try and break it.

Thor: Hand kisses

Thor is very back and forth between Midgard and Asgard, so whenever he sees you, he always smiles like he’s seeing you for the first time. He takes your hand in his, bringing it to his lips and pressing a soft kiss to the back of it, saying graciously “My Lady,” with that precious look on his face. Thor does this at any time he can, grazing his lips on your hand as a sign of loyalty and respect. Whenever he catches you creasing your brows, or pacing with uneasiness, he stands to face you, pulling your palms to his face and kissing the center of it in reassurance. It makes your eyelids flutter, feeling like a queen in his presence. Thor wouldn’t have it any other way.

Bucky: Jaw kisses

Despite the thin stubble Bucky always sports, you loving to press kisses to the juncture between his neck and jaw. They’re normally light, airy things, just a soft reminder that you’re there, and that you love Bucky more than anything. You give them out quickly, often pressing one near his ear when he takes off, as opposed to a cheek kiss. Bucky also likes giving them, smiling widely as he leans down to your jaw, making you laugh as the pressure intensifies there. It’s something the two of you have made your own, a casual, yet achingly loving habit you can’t go a day without giving.

Peter: Hug and Kiss

Peter is generally too sweet for words, and the only gesture that can encompass all those feelings is hugging him with all your strength, followed by a tentative kiss to his lips. Peter grew fond of the this and played along, often spinning you in his arms, what with his superhuman strength. You’re always the first to initiate it, running to him at top speed and slowing to make it easier to be caught. Peter’s grin is a brilliant flash, like a camera, and then his head is buried in your hair, laughs escaping the both of you. It’s a particularly welcome sight after long missions and tough days at school, and you’re always ready to deliver. After he sets you down the two of you just grin lazily, holding hands and kissing again, much softer this time, as he whispers, “Missed you.” “Missed you more, Parker.”

Natasha: Neck kisses

Natasha’s favorite thing about you is your neck, so it only makes sense that it’s her preferred place to kiss you. It’s something she has access to, for your neck is almost always exposed at any given time. She often presses them lightly to your throat if she’s feeling content and happy, her head on your shoulder, T.V. on in front of you two. They can often be sultry as well, a repeated peck being placed in one spot as she scratches you with her teeth to gain your attention. It’s a gesture you find pride in dishing out as well, leaving lipstick marks and bruises whenever you can to try and embarrass her, but it seems the assassin has no shame. She walks proudly with her chin high, adorning the bruises like badges.

Wanda: Air kisses

Wanda isn’t too huge on showing affection outside of privacy, so instead of grand gestures, you find yourself blowing her kisses from wherever you are, smiling softly and saying “love you.” It’s become a signature now, and almost every time either of you enters or exits a room, you kiss your hands, outstretching them. This even applies on battlefields, when Wanda is far from you but still in sight, you send her one and she smiles, shaping a heart with her glowing red hands. You’ve even done them while she’s away, often asking “where’s Wanda?” only for Tony to explain that she’s away. You’ll then kiss your hand and send a kiss straight up. “That’s for Wanda,” you say aloud, causing your teammates to coo over your actions.

Steve: Forehead kisses

Steve is an old fashioned guy, and some of his flirting techniques are a little outdated and too domestic for this century. But one expression you took a liking to was forehead kisses, placed right above your brow with firmness and closed eyes. It was a spur of the moment when Cap first did it, throwing his shoulder around you after a mission and planting on right in the center of your forehead. He’d thought for a second you hated the gesture, but when you melted into his embrace he did it again. He’s made it a tradition, kissing your forehead after every successful mission, as gratitude for your safety. You like to return them when the soldier least expects it, like in front of all the avengers or when he’s half asleep. No matter when you do it his expression always softens, a serene smile gracing his lips.

Sam: Cheek Kisses

Sam’s a gentleman. He may not be a super soldier, or a Norse god, but he’s a good guy all the same. He presses kisses to your cheeks when he sees you, which he always goes out of his way to do anyways. They’re quick and simple, unlike the ones you return. You’re always looking at Sam with something akin to admiration, so whenever he kisses you grab his cheeks, peppering kisses all across them quickly, watching his face flush and that lovely grin of his spread across his face. He wasn’t used to it at first, but now he’s almost expectant of it, often closing his eyes turning his face towards you. “You’re full of shit, Sam Wilson,” you laugh, but oblige him nonetheless.

Clint: Nose kisses

It started as an accident. You missed Clint’s cheek completely, ending up hardly grazing your lips on the tip of his nose. He had blinked back in surprise, but his whole face turned red. “Did you mean that?” he laughed, but said nothing else of it. He started giving them to you the day after, a rushed, hasty press on his lips to your nose, an action that caught you by surprise. Now he does it whenever he’s on the go, his first move to grab his bow, the second to kiss your nose. You close your eyes and feel the soft pressure there, unaware of his adoring gaze, but still basking in the feeling of warmth the action brings you. You return the kisses when Clint is sitting down, using it as a way to acknowledge that you see him; when you haven’t spoken yet, when you’re passing him for the first time, and all those moments when words don’ seem to fit the mood. You nonchalantly lean down and kiss his nose, and then keep going about your day as though you’ve never stopped at all, tiny grins spreading on both your faces.

President Wilson’s Joint Address to Congress, Leading to a Declaration of War Against Germany, 4/2/1917

Series: Journals and Minute Books, 1797 - 1968. Record Group 46: Records of the U.S. Senate, 1789 - 2015

One hundred years ago on April 2, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson delivered this address to a special joint session of Congress and called for a declaration of war against Germany.  The resulting congressional vote brought the United States into World War I.

On the heels of the German announcement to renew unrestricted submarine warfare  on February 1, 1917, the British, on February 24, revealed the  Zimmerman Telegram. When Wilson released the message to the press on March  1, Americans were shocked and angered. With the support of his entire cabinet,  Wilson, who had been reelected in 1916 on the slogan “He kept us out of  war,” reluctantly concluded that war was inevitable. In his speech before  a special session of Congress, Wilson, as usual, took the moral high ground  and declared that not only had America’s rights as a neutral been violated  but that “The world must be made safe for democracy.” Americans  must fight “for the rights and liberties of small nations” and to  “bring peace and safety to make the world itself at last free.”  

Random Sleepy Conversation - December 15th, 2016
  • <p> <b>Judy:</b> So, that's why I stopped at carrot #46. Almost beat the record too. *looks up at Nick, her head in his lap*<p/><b>Nick:</b> Huh. Weird story. Makes sense though. Too many carrots and you would've turned into one.<p/><b>Judy:</b> *laughs* That isn't possible, ya dork.<p/><b>Nick:</b> I know, I know. *smirks and plays with her ears softly, knowing it'll put her to sleep* Why do you always have to contradict the silly stuff I say?<p/><b>Judy:</b> Because it's fun. *yawns, falling asleep*<p/><b>Nick:</b> Figures. Little Ms. Smartypants... It's a good thing you're adorable. You know, one day I'm gonna say something kind of off-the-wall, and someone somewhere will prove it. And then you'll be... Carrots?<p/><b>Judy:</b> *wakes up suddenly, only one eye somewhat open* Huh? Did you say something Nick?<p/><b>Nick:</b> *laughs softly* Nevermind, Carrots. Go back to sleep.<p/></p>

anonymous asked:

I loved your sherlolly at hogwarts promt,pleaseee give me more. Pleaseeeeeeeeee pleaseeee

Oh, okay Nonny. You’ve pulled my leg. I’ll do it. (I kid; I adore Potter!lock.)

There had only been one previous occasion in which the Triwizard Tournament had found itself with four champions. Considering that the Dark Lord had returned on that occasion, no chances were taken when the Goblet of Fire spat out another that dangerous fourth name. Weeks of inquiries and investigations took place, and during that time, the four champions began to strike up a bond of some kind.

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'We Are the World' at 30: 12 tales you might not know

The all-star recording session for We Are the World, the biggest charity single of all time, took place 30 years ago Wednesday.

On Jan. 28, 1985, at A&M Recording Studios in Hollywood, following the American Music Awards, more than 40 artists gathered to record a song Lionel Richie and Michael Jackson had written to raise awareness of widespread, life-threatening poverty in Africa. Most of that show’s winners — including Cyndi Lauper, Hall & Oates, Bruce Springsteen, Huey Lewis, Willie Nelson, Tina Turner, the Pointer Sisters, Kenny Rogers and the Jacksons — participated.

Inspired by the U.K. all-star charity single Do They Know it’s Christmas?, released a few months earlier, We Are the World was released March 7, 1985, and went on to sell more than 20 million copies. The more than $75 million raised by non-profit organization USA for Africa helped to fight poverty on the continent. The song also won three Grammy Awards in 1986, including song and record of the year.

“A great song lasts for eternity,” says Quincy Jones, who produced the track. “I guarantee you that if you travel anywhere on the planet today and start humming the first few bars of that tune, people will immediately know that song.”

Here are 12 things you might not know about the song and the recording session:

Stevie Wonder, not Michael Jackson, originally was supposed to be Richie’s co-writer.

“I was really trying to get in touch with Stevie and couldn’t do it,” Richie says. “Stevie was touring a lot. He was doing a lot of stuff.” A phone call with Jones got him and Jackson involved. “I got Michael before I could get Stevie,” Richie says. “We said, ‘If Stevie calls me back, we’ll get him in. In the meantime, I think we can get it done with Michael.’ ”

Richie and Jackson listened to national anthems to get in the proper frame of mind to write.

“We didn’t want a normal-sounding song,” Richie says. “We wanted bombastic, the biggest thing you got.” Knowing they needed to create something that immediately sounded important and had global appeal, they prepped for their songwriting sessions by listening to national anthems from several countries, including the USA, England, Germany and Russia. “We put all that into a pot in our heads and came up with a rhythm that sounded familiar, like a world anthem. We wanted people to feel like it was a familiar song. Once we got that — show business, man.”

The We Are the World recording session caused Richie to forget the American Music Awards.

Maybe it was just sleep deprivation — after all, the session began at 9 p.m. and lasted 12 hours — but Richie claims to have no memory of hosting that night’s American Music Awards ceremony and winning five awards, including favorite pop/rock male artist. “I walked through that door, and I forgot I had done that,” he says. “The group of people in that room was so mind-changing. There’s Bob Dylan, Billy Joel — give me a freaking break. I had never in my life experienced anything like that.”

It may have been a massive gathering of celebrities, but few other people knew the session was taking place.

Many of the singers arrived in limousines, having just come from the awards show, but not everybody showed up in style. “I think Bruce Springsteen parked his truck in the parking lot of the Rite-Aid or a grocery store that used to be across the street,” Richie says. “He parked over there and walked in. He didn’t know you could come through the gate.” The logistics of such a session would be exponentially more difficult in the era of cellphone cameras and social media. “Today, you couldn’t keep that a secret,” Richie says. “You’d have to have a full-on runway, and everybody would have to check their phones.”

Most of the singers had never heard the song before walking into the studio.

“We did not have MP3s,” Richie says. “We had cassettes back then. We had to send it to you, so most of them had not heard the song.” After all, Richie and Jackson had just barely finished the song in time for the initial tracking session held a week previous at Kenny Rogers’ studio. Even Rogers hadn’t heard it: “We didn’t know what we were going to sing until that night,” he says. Hall & Oates’ John Oates, who sang in the backing choir, says, “It had the anthemic quality and the simplicity of melody that made pulling off a giant ensemble like that very easy to do. And it was a room full of amazing singers, so that wasn’t exactly a problem.”

The choir roster had its roots in Donna Summer’s State of Independence.

The choir for Summer’s 1982 hit, which Jones produced, included Jackson, Richie, Wonder, James Ingram, Kenny Loggins and Dionne Warwick, all of whom also appeared on We Are the World. “I was on familiar ground,” Jones says. “If I hadn’t worked individually with over half of these singers before, there was no way I would’ve signed on.”

As one of the song’s writers, Richie got dibs on his solo line.

“Quincy said, 'Now, Lionel, where would you like to come in?’ ” Richie recalls. “I said, 'Are you kidding me? I’m coming in first, so I can get out of the way!’ ” According to Richie, the session’s secret hero was Jones’ vocal arranger, Tom Bähler. Before the session, he had listened to the recorded output of each of the soloists, determined their vocal ranges, then identified which melodic phrases best suited their registers. “The parts they assigned fit the vocalists really well,” Rogers says. “I couldn’t have done the stuff that was done at the end that Steve Perry did. They were incredibly well-laid-out.”

When Ray Charles spoke, everybody listened.

“Ray Charles, being who he was, commanded a certain deference and respect from everyone, even though he didn’t assert himself in any weird way,” Oates says. “He was just standing in the middle, doing his part. Lionel, Michael and Quincy were running the show. It was their song, their production, and everyone was very respectful, trying to make it happen. There were moments when people — and I will not name names because it’s not worth it — in the chorus started to put their producers’ hats on. They started to say, 'What if we did this?’ and 'What if we did that?’ Coming up with ideas. It was obvious it was a complicated thing to pull off in general, and having too many cooks in the stew would be a giant catastrophe. Ray, every once in a while, would just pipe up: 'C'mon. Hey. Let’s go. Listen to Michael. Let’s get this thing done.’ He was there to sing, and he sensed that it could go south very quickly. He commanded a lot of respect, and I thought that was very cool.”

Bob Dylan was nervous about singing his solo.

In a one-hour behind-the-scenes documentary produced to coincide with the release of We Are the World, there’s a surreal scene in which Stevie Wonder sits at the studio piano, imitating Bob Dylan to Bob Dylan to help him get the phrasing for his “There’s a choice we’re making” solo phrase. “Dylan turned to me and Stevie and said, 'How do you want me to sound?’ Richie recalls. "We were all kind of doing it, and we wanted to make sure we didn’t insult anybody.” Oates, who stood directly behind Dylan while the chorus was recording, remembers him being anxious about singing his solo. “He’s not a melodic guy, and it was a very specific melody,” Oates says. “I think he felt uncomfortable singing that particular melody, and he worked around it in his own way.”

The participants autographed the first page of the sheet music for the song 'We Are the World,’ written by Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie. The song was designed to raise awareness and funds for a worldwide hunger relief program, and its international success led the way for the Live Aid concerts later that year.

Kenny Rogers wanted to get everybody’s autograph.

“Once we sang it all the way through and realized how well-thought-out it was, we realized it was something special,” Rogers says. “So I took a sheet of music from the session and started getting people to sign it. Once I started, Diana Ross started, then everybody was running around trying to get everybody. It’s framed on the wall of my house in Atlanta.” Oates, who also got an autographed chart, echoes Rogers almost word for word: “I have it framed in my studio in Colorado. When people come in and see it, they freak. I made sure I got everybody. I even got Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder to sign it. For once, I had the presence of mind to do something like that, and it’s one of my most treasured possessions.” Jones’ signed sheet music hangs in his den: “It always makes me smile when I look at it and start reading those names.”

That “Check your egos at the door” sign turned out not to be necessary.

That’s what Jones says. “Here you had 46 of the biggest recording stars in the entire world in one room, to help people in a far-off place who were in desperate need,” he says. “I don’t think that night, that experience, will ever truly be duplicated again. I know and believe in the power of music to bring people together for the betterment of mankind, and there may be no better example of this than the collective that was We Are the World.”

USA for Africa is still around.

Thirty years after We Are the World, USA for Africa still works on behalf of communities in Africa. Recent initiatives have addressed climate-change issues, arts campaigns and the shipment of medical supplies to Liberia and Sierra Leone to combat the spread of ebola. Royalties from We Are the World continue to be the organization’s primary source of funding. “We still earn, but certainly not the kind of money we earned 25 years ago,” says executive director Marcia Thomas, who joined the non-profit in 1986 to work on Hands Across America, another USA for Africa initiative. “Our biggest support in terms of where We Are the World is bought most frequently is not in the U.S. but other parts of the world, primarily Japan and Asia.”

We Are the World soloists, in order of appearance:

  • Lionel Richie
  • Stevie Wonder
  • Paul Simon
  • Kenny Rogers
  • James Ingram
  • Tina Turner
  • Billy Joel
  • Michael Jackson
  • Diana Ross
  • Dionne Warwick
  • Willie Nelson
  • Al Jarreau
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Kenny Loggins
  • Steve Perry
  • Daryl Hall
  • Huey Lewis
  • Cyndi Lauper
  • Kim Carnes
  • Bob Dylan
  • Ray Charles

These people sang in the chorus: Dan Aykroyd, Harry Belafonte, Lindsey Buckingham, Mario Cipollina, Johnny Colla, Sheila E., Bob Geldof, Bill Gibson, Chris Hayes, Sean Hopper, Jackie Jackson, La Toya Jackson, Marlon Jackson, Randy Jackson, Tito Jackson, Waylon Jennings, Bette Midler, John Oates, Jeffrey Osborne, Anita Pointer, June Pointer, Ruth Pointer and Smokey Robinson.

“One of the only things regrettable about this whole 30-year anniversary is that Michael’s not here to share his part of it,” Richie says. “There was a lot of craziness happening with us and a lot of silliness. I’m just sorry he’s not here to share it.”


Lincoln Day, 2/12/1917

Series: Berryman Political Cartoon Collection, 1896 - 1949Record Group 46: Records of the U.S. Senate, 1789 - 2015 

As the threat of World War I looms, Uncle Sam pauses to consider the legacy of Abraham Lincoln on his birthday (born February 12, 1809) in this cartoon by Clifford Berryman, published 100 years ago in the Washington Evening Star on February 12, 1917.