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John Legend recalls writing for Michael Jackson and how he inspired new single

23 September 2022, 06:00 | Updated: 24 September 2022, 15:05

John Legend was inspired by the late Michael Jackson on his new album
John Legend was inspired by the late Michael Jackson on his new album. Picture: Getty/Smooth

By Tom Eames

John Legend has opened up about some of the inspirations of his new album, including the King of Pop himself.

John Legend released his brand new LP Legend earlier this month, and he has revealed how the new track 'All She Wanna Do' was heavily inspired by the '80s pop anthems by artists such as Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston.

The 'All of Me' singer also spoke about how he once wrote for Michael Jackson with The Voice coach will.i.am, before the King of Pop's death in 2009.

Watch the full interview exclusively on Global Player here.

"When we started working on it, it reminded me of a late-‘70s, early-to-mid-‘80s kind of track – kind of R&B pop," John told Smooth's Jenni Falconer.

"I was thinking about Prince, I was thinking about Michael Jackson and Whitney. What we made was kind of a mix of all that. I threw a little David Bowie energy in there, too, with the guitar part. And, yeah, that’s what we were going for."

On writing for Jackson, John explained: "Well, he asked me and Will.i.am to write some ideas for him. We were writing ideas but he never made an album after that, so it never saw the light of day.

"I’ve written quite a bit with Will.i.am, so that was the reason why he thought it would be cool for us to do it together. We wrote 'Ordinary People' together. We wrote 'She Don’t Have to Know' for my first album. We wrote 'Save Room' and a bunch of other songs together.

"So we had quite a rapport, working together, and that was one of the things we tried to take on."

John Legend and Chrissy Teigen in 2022
John Legend and Chrissy Teigen in 2022. Picture: Getty

John also gave an update on his growing family. He is currently a father to children Luna and Miles with wife Chrissy Teigen, and they are expecting their third.

When asked if Miles sings like his dad yet, he said: "I think Luna really likes to sing more than he does, but they both like music a lot. They like to dance a lot. They love coming to my shows. They love music."

On how Chrissy is doing, he added: "She’s feeling good so far. It’s been a relatively event-free pregnancy, and she’s handling it quite well."

John Legend's new album Legend is out now.

Watch the full interview on Global Player here.