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Global stars help launch (Red) music mag

LONDON - Global music stars including U2, Jay Z and The Killers will be performing on MSN today, World Aids Day, to mark the launch of (Red)Wire, a digital music magazine from charity (Red).

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Throughout the day there will be performances on red.msn.com from U2, Jay-Z, Coldplay, John Legend, Dixie Chicks, The Killers and Elton John, The Police and Elvis Costello, Death Cab for Cutie and Sheryl Crow.

The performances mark the launch of (Red)Wire, a digital magazine that aims to save lives by donating half of the £4 monthly fee to the Global Fund to fight Aids in Africa.

Members of (Red)Wire will receive an issue every Wednesday delivered to their desktop featuring music from some of the world's top artists. Members who join before December 10 will become "founding members" of (Red)Wire and receive the first issue on that day as well as a special bonus song from Jay-Z.

(Red)Wire has partnered with MSN to reach millions of people with its launch event today and it will also be the portal for people to learn more about (Red)Wire artists.

Members will receive a weekly digital music offering, including an exclusive song from a major artist, a song from an up and coming artist and a special piece of varied content such as a digital short film, photography or a reading from an artist or actor.

There will also be a window about the impact (Red) money has in Africa.

(Red)Wire revenues will help buy life-saving medicine and other services for those living with HIV in Africa. Just five members will generate enough money, each month, to buy antiretroviral medicine for one person living with HIV in Africa.

Don MacKinnon, founder of Hear Music and former vice-president of music & entertainment at Starbucks, conceived (Red)Wire to help create a platform for "music discovery" and a fund to buy medicine for Africans living with HIV.

MacKinnon said: "Every week, when you receive this great music, you'll know you are helping people in Africa get the medicine they need. It's that simple."

Bono, co-founder of (Red), said: "Don MacKinnon just might be the penicillin the ailing music business needs. He is an innovator by nature and I have no doubt that some of the music software we are working on at (Red) will help change the way music is received and change the lives of Africans who will die without the Aids drugs that (Red) can help provide."

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