John Legend shuns 'karaoke' tracks


John Legend

John Legend purposefully avoided doing popular ''karaoke'' covers of huge soul hits on his 'Wake Up!' album.

John Legend purposefully avoided doing "karaoke" covers on his 'Wake Up!' album.

The 'Ordinary People' singer recently collaborated with musician Questlove and his band The Roots for an album of soul covers, and said they set out to pick songs which hadn't been covered too often before, because there was more space to add new touches to them.

John exclusively told BANG Showbiz: "There are certain songs that have been played over and over and over and are so ingrained into the public consciousness, that it's practically karaoke if you cover them. So we felt like we didn't want to do 'What's Going On' or that type of song, because it's already been heard so much and there would be nothing we could add to it by doing it.

"I think what it was, that, and we didn't want to have to be overwhelmed by the legacy of the original tracks."

John also said they were keen not to over-modernise the tracks - including 'Hard Times', originally by Curtis Mayfield and Leon Moore's 'Our Generation (The Hope of the World)' when they recorded them.

He added: "We intentionally didn't we didn't want to make versions of the songs that made us sound like we were trying to be 'extra cool' and extra modern, we wanted to retain the soulfulness and the organic quality, we didn't want to put a bunch of synths on it and drum machines we wanted to preserve that feel."

'Wake Up!' is in stores now.

John Legend

Neo-soul smoothie who was a piano prodigy who played with Lauryn Hill before being discovered by Kanye West.


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