Led Zeppelin's Page, Aerosmith to play free China concert

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The Independent Culture

Legendary Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page, Aerosmith, and the Black Eyed Peas will headline a free April concert on Beijing's Olympic Green, promoters said Wednesday.

The "Show of Peace," is scheduled for April 17 to mark Earth Day, which is celebrated each year to promote awareness of environmental issues, promoter Rick Garson said.

He called it the first-ever global peace and environment concert in China featuring world famous celebrities and musicians.

"Tickets are free. You can't charge for peace and green. It is going to be for everybody, it's like China's gift to the world and the people," Garson told reporters.

"What we are going to do is raise money, obviously, from sponsorship, international distribution, merchandising, Internet, ringtones, DVDs, CDs. That's how we are doing it, it is being self-funded as we speak."

Organisers were also talking with other artists about performing, such as Pearl Jam, Lady Gaga, Green Day, and 50 Cent, while numerous Chinese musicians were being brought in too, he said.

Organisers hope the concert will be beamed live around the world via television and the Internet to mark this year's 40th anniversary of Earth Day.

"My belief in music as a universal language is the reason I returned to Beijing to voice my support for the Show of Peace," said Page, who performed the Led Zeppelin classic "Whole Lotta Love" at the closing ceremony of the Beijing Olympics last year.

"This (concert) is a tribute to the power of music and its positive effect. Music has been one of the most powerful languages that speaks to the heart of the people around the world."

Sponsors include the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, the China-based non-profit Joint-US China Collaboration on Clean Energy, the United Nations' NGO Pathways to Peace, and Ted Turner's Captain Planet Foundation.

The Olympic Green is the park encompassing key venues built for the 2008 Olympics including the Bird's Nest Olympic stadium.

Discussions were under way on the numbers of concert-goers who will be allowed to attend, which organisers hoped would number up to 100,000, Garson said.