Author Topic: NEW John Legend interview  (Read 31 times)


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NEW John Legend interview
« on: October 02, 2008, 11:28:55 AM » Alternatives: Hey John, so what made you join the THISDAY Festival?
John Legend: Well they asked me to do it in Nigeria last year, and we had a great time with them. Then they wanted me to do it here, and I said of course. I think itís a great show and a great idea; Iím glad to do it with Jay-Z and itís going to be a lot of fun tonight. 

AHHA: What can you tell me about your new album Evolver? The first single ďGreenlightĒ is something that I really like, but wasnít something I was expecting from youÖ
John Legend: [laughs] Thatís great. Thank you. Continue to expect the unexpected. I always like to experiment and try different sounds on each of my albums. Donít expect me to stay in the same [lane], Iím always going to progress and try some different things. I think this album is a mixture of the sounds that you heard on Get Lifted and Once Again, but also mixed in with some new stuff. I think itís a good mix.

AHHA: Do you ever get scared of change?
John Legend: No, not at all. I think some fans might be, but Iím not. [laughs]

AHHA: Do you feel people have you pigeonholed you or put you in a particular bracket?
John Legend: Yeah of course. I mean I think itís cool to give people what they want and what they expect, but also put a twist on it. I think with each album I have done [Iíve] given them some of what they expect, but also switched it up a little bit. Otherwise it gets boring right?

AHHA: Who have you worked with this time around besides Mr. Andre 3000?
John Legend: Other than Andre, we have Kanye on the album, Pharrell was involved as well, Will.I.Am, Ne-Yo wrote a song on the album, and I did a record with Buju Banton. So yeah itís a nice variety of stuff.

AHHA: Estelle?
John Legend: Estelle of course. How could I forget her! [laughs] Iím very proud of Estelle right now. Sheís doing quite well right?

AHHA: When I spoke to Estelle, she told me that she first did ďAmerican BoyĒ to prove you wrong because you didnít like House musicÖ.
John Legend: Itís funny as I heard the beat and I was like, ďWell I donít usually like this kind of music but this sounds really good.Ē I actually wrote the chorus idea and gave her the concept of the song and then she wrote the verses. So she didnít have that much convincing to do. [laughs] I was like, ďThis sh*t sounds fresh.Ē [laughs]

AHHA: Would you like to incorporate House music into your sound maybe?
John Legend: I never say that I wonít do anything. Iím always willing to try things. I just have to love it, I have to enjoy it, I have to think itís a good record and think it works you know? If it works, it works right?

AHHA: Sticking to Estelle for a second then, did you hear about the debate on soul music and [UK] artists like Duffy and Adele? If so, what are your thoughts?
John Legend: Yeah I heard about it. Iím not familiar with either of them, but I donít really care. I think Estelle makes great music and it stands on its own. I think out of all the albums that I have heard this year, thatís one of the best ones that came out this year. Even if the other ones are pitted against her, at the end of the da, if people are going to like her then they are going to buy her. They donít have to buy her over anyone else. If they like all three, then they can buy all three.

AHHA: Would you want to sign anymore UK acts?
John Legend: I would sign anyone who I think is the right artist to sign no matter where they are from. If they make great music and I feel they have a marketable talent, then it could work. If I feel like we would work well together. You know thereís a lot of things into signing somebody, itís partly about the chemistry and working well together and feeling like you can do a successful project together. I mean, I donít have a lot of free time to work with a bunch of people, so each decision I make has to be careful.

AHHA: It must be exciting though. Your first time managing someone and it has done so well?
John Legend: Absolutely. Itís not a bad way to start. [laughs] Itís like with Kanye, the first artist he signed was me and the first artist I sign is Estelle. We donít have a bad track record right? [laughs]

AHHA: Not bad at all. So will we be seeing you experimenting with different styles on the new album?
John Legend: Yeah. You heard ďGreenlightĒ obviously so thatís a little different for me. We got a little bit of Reggae on the album, we got some mid tempo, some club tracks, some slow jams, we got a little bit of everything. Itís going to be a fun album. I think people will love it.

AHHA: Do you have any non-music related projects happening?
John Legend: I have a movie with Bernie Mac and Samuel Jackson called Soul Man, which I was a part of. Other than itís pretty much all music

AHHA: What can you tell me about the movie?
John Legend: Itís a comedy. Itís very music related. Itís about a musical group that broke up and are trying to get back together and stuff. Itís a fun movie. I just have a pretty small role in it but it was fun.

AHHA: Regarding the blogs Ė they definitely are hard on you when it comes to the gay rumors. Do you care to address it? Does it bother you?
John Legend: [laughs] No. Blogs, their job is too talk sh*t everyday. They have to fill up space. You know, I understand. They trying to be entertaining. They trying to fill up space everyday and sometimes they donít have anything interesting to talk about so they got to make sh*t up. I understand, I read some of the blogs sometimes, and I think itís funny. You canít let that get to you, you just got to keep living your life.

AHHA: So any goals this year?
John Legend: For this album to do better than the first two. [laughs] Iím always trying to expand and grow and improve from what Iíve done before and I think Iíve done that.

AHHA: The hard work has definitely paid off right...
John Legend: You will not make it in this business and succeed over a long period of time unless you work really hard. I had to learn as I went when I was grinding. And it does make you appreciate your success. It makes you realize that it's really about the work. It's really about making the best music you can make.