By Todd Martens
LOS ANGELES (Billboard) - New songs by Patti LaBelle, Enrique Iglesias, Gerald Levert, Joan Osborne, and Aretha Franklin, and remixes of Britney Spears and Mary J. Blige tracks are part of a compilation that will raise money to fight AIDS in southern Africa.
Producer Phil Ramone, who has worked with Billy Joel and Tony Bennett, among others, is overseeing "Songs for Life," due June 24 from Capitol Records.
Proceeds from the 18-track album will benefit the Royal Initiative to Combat AIDS, a U.S. not-for-profit organization aimed at combating the spread of the virus in Southern Africa. The album will also feature previously released tracks by John Lennon, Paul Simon, and Destiny's Child.
"Songs for Life" has been in the works since 2000, and also features South African artist Jonathan Butler. An all-star group of African artists, such as Innocent Modiva, Margaret Motsage, Jabu Khanyle, Loyiso Bala, Zenzi Lee, and the Swaziland Redemption Choir, contributes the song "Every Breath."
To promote the release of the album and further benefit the charity, events are being organized in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and New York on June 23 and June 25. The affairs will feature speakers as well as live performances from some of the participating artists, who will be announced in coming weeks.
Here is the "Songs for Life" tracklist:
"Sacred Pledge," Patti LaBelle