Gabriel, Lennox set for S. African AIDS benefit


JOHANNESBURG -- The first-ever Johannesburg 46664 concert will be headlined by a diverse roster of artists, including stalwart supporters of the HIV/AIDS prevention campaign such as Peter Gabriel and Annie Lennox.

The concert takes place on World Aids Day (Dec. 1) and will be held at Johannesburg's 50,000-capacity Ellis Park Stadium. Alongside Lennox and Gabriel, who both appeared at the inaugural concert in Cape Town in November 2003, it will also feature Razorlight, Corrine Bailey Rae, Jamelia, Ludacris and Goo Goo Dolls.

The announcement of the concert's international artist lineup follows a recent statement by former South African President Nelson Mandela in which he gave details of the fifth International 46664 concert to be staged since the organization's inception in 2002.

The 46664 campaign -- named for Mandela's prison number during his 18-year confinement on Robben Island -- aims to raise awareness of the global HIV/AIDS pandemic.

Both Lennox and Gabriel are founding 46664 ambassadors. Lennox recorded the song "Sing" with a choir from the Treatment Action Campaign for her new album, "Songs of Mass Destruction," as part of her ongoing commitment to highlighting the spread of HIV/AIDS, particularly mother to child transmission of the disease. It is the start of a project, also called SING, aimed at working with female artists to raise money and awareness about the pandemic.

A statement from the organizers said that "Along with each artist appearing in a solo set, the Johannesburg concert, like those previous, is likely to showcase many unique artist collaborations, which have become a 46664 concert trademark."

Additional details, including the South African artist lineup, will be announced later this month.