John Legend & The Roots Tell Music Fans to ‘WAKE UP’!

July 8, 2010

Shouts  to my peoples Nader @ Sony BMG Canada for sending this one to me – thanks for making my day 😉

What happens when two of the most powerful sources in the creation of live music join together?  Fans of John Legend and The Roots will get to see for themselves on September 21st, when the two musical entities release “Wake Up”.  A testament to true music and musicianship, the CD will feature tracks inspired by the raw soul of the 60s and 70s, infused with rock, gospel and reggae, and of course,  hip-hop. Listing Obama’s presidential campaign for change as an inspiration, the concept focused around creating just a single, but of course true fans wouldn’t stand for that! So a full album was in order. 

According to the label release, the album is highlighted by familiar tracks like “Wholly Holy” by Marvin Gaye and “Little Ghetto Boy” by Donny Hathaway mixed with the more obscure selections of Baby Huey and the Babysitters’ “Hard Times,” and “Hang on in There” by Mike James Kirkland. “These songs sound so relevant now,” Legend says. “On most of them, you wouldn’t change a lyric. ‘Wake Up Everybody’ (the album’s first single, featuring contributions from Toronto’s own Melanie Fiona and Common) has four verses—the first one is a general statement, the second is about education, third is about health care, and the fourth is about making a better environment. No editing needed.” “When these songs were written, people were more spiritually in tune,” says Roots drummer/musical director Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson. “It was fresh from the civil rights era and there was a feeling of hope that maybe, yes, someday we will all be free. In 2010, not so much.” The album features one original composition, Legend’s song “Shine,” which is featured in the upcoming documentary film Waiting for Superman. The song, a “Stevie-Wonder-meets-gospel” stunner, clearly demonstrates the strengths of this specific group of musicians. Wake Up! blends Legend’s expressive, thoughtful vocal interpretations with an element of funk that only The Roots can provide.

Can’t wait to hear this one?? Neither can I –> John Legend single-handedly made me fall back in love with the piano, after a long, tortuous love affair (yes, it went that deep, and I’ll definitely save that for another day), and The Roots are, well, The Roots. no explanation required. 

 Peep the link to keep you awake in the meantime: 



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