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Stars remember Paris victims at race relations concert

Ed Sheeran, Nicki Minaj and John Legend were among the performers at a star-studded concert which started with a tribute to the victims of the Paris terror attacks.

Artists from across the music industry came together to take part in Shining a Light: A Concert for Progress on Race in America at Los Angeles' Shrine Auditorium on Wednesday (18Nov15).

The gig aimed to heal fractured race relations in the US and the show started with a performance by Bruce Springsteen and John Legend, who sang The Boss' track American Skin (41 Shots), which he wrote about a 1999 police shooting.

Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman then led the crowd in a tribute to those who died in the horrific gun and bomb attacks in Paris, France on Friday (13Nov15), declaring, "Tonight, as we mourn the loss of life in Paris, let us rededicate ourselves to erasing the hate and to creating an America where we can all move on up together toward justice, community, love, brotherhood, sisterhood and freedom."

The concert featured performances from artists including Ed Sheeran, Nicki Minaj, Pharrell Williams, the Zac Brown Band, Sia, and Sting, and starry duets from John Legend and Pink, Alicia Keys and Aloe Blacc plus Eric Church and Smokey Robinson.

Rapper Nicki recited Maya Angelou's poem Still I Rise, and actor Jamie Foxx brought his six-year-old daughter Annalise on stage with a group of friends to read passages from the Bible.

Between the performances, the show also featured videos of stars addressing racial issues in America - Pharrell Williams spoke with families affected by the South Carolina church shooting back in June (15), and Alicia Keys was shown visiting families in riot-hit Baltimore, Maryland.

John Legend was shown speaking with the wives of police officers in Ferguson, Missouri, which was also marred by unrest last year (14) following a controversial police shooting.

The concert is due to air on Friday (20Nov15), and proceeds from the event will go to the United Way charity's Fund for Progress on Race in America, which aims to heal racial divides in the country.

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