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U2 Joshua Tree Tour 2019
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U2 and Geldof to hail Brits 25th anniversary

Posted on Monday, January 10 @ 12:00:30 CET by Macphisto

LONDON (Reuters) - The Brit Awards will celebrate their 25th birthday next month with U2 headlining the UK record industry Oscars and Bob Geldof lined up for a lifetime achievement award, organisers say.

Flamboyant disco rockers Scissor Sisters, who are joining the line-up to perform on February 9, could well be in line for best album when the Brit nominations are announced on Monday evening.

Record executives will be reaching with relief for the champagne after a rollercoaster year.

UK album sales rose 2.3 percent in 2004 as Scissor Sisters, who hail from the United States but made it big after signing with a UK record label, made an 11th-hour surge to finish at number one.

With U.S. album sales also growing for the first time in four years, the music business is buoyant again after a lengthy downturn in sales while illicit music downloads soared.

Another group performing live at the industry's annual orgy of self-congratulation will be Scot rockers Franz Ferdinand. They could land a string of gongs for best band and best single.

In a fast-changing musical scene transformed by new technology, U2's "Vertigo" was the top-selling UK download, boosted by a high-profile partnership with Apple Computer's iTunes.

The Brits have raised more than six million pounds over the past 25 years for UK musical charities.

This year's recipients could be different with organisers promising to make an announcement about channelling funds to Asia for tsunami aid relief.

Irish rock star Geldof, who led the Live Aid efforts to relieve famine in Africa in the 1980s, has appealed for people not to forget Africa's plight in the rush to help Asia.

To celebrate a quarter of a century for the Brits, the organisers have come up with an intriguing one-off award -- picking the best song of the last 25 years. The shortlist is being announced on Monday.

Appearing at the nominations launch will be teenage chart-toppers McFly, a sure sign that they too could be up for record industry recognition.

© Reuters 2005. All Rights Reserved.

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