Fresh from his performance at the Oscars 2017, John Legend returns to the cover of FAULT Magazine. As well as a cover shoot, John opens up about his latest album Darkness and Light, how his wife Chrissy Teigen and their baby daughter Luna influence his music, La La Land and more.
Back in December, John released his fifth studio album, Darkness and Light. Over the years, life has changed for John and he revealed how different experiences have influenced his music. “I’ve grown up a lot in the last twelve years and had a lot more life experiences. Getting married and having a baby have added new perspectives and depth to the subjects I sing about too,” he said. “Just from living in the world and seeing more contemporary issues have added new layers to my music which weren’t there before.”
John also revealed that his wife Chrissy and their daughter Luna brought a lot of positivity to his new record. “I think I’ve always been an optimistic person and I think that streak of optimism runs through each of my albums. I think there is just more depth to what I’m feeling because everything means more to me now I have a wife and daughter,” he said.
“Everything in more significant and I’m thinking more philosophically about things and thinking about life and death a lot more. Before what I sang about were my ambitions of making money, getting girls and having fun which was a lot more selfish but now I have better perspective and depth on what’s really important in life.”
As Darkness and Light marks John’s fifth album, there is a certain expectation when it comes to his sound. Whilst he acknowledges that he cannot please everyone, he is happy that the album is a winner with his fans and critics alike.
“Not everyone is going to be happy with every album and with every song but when I put music out, I do it with the confidence that my fans will love it or at least give it a chance. The feedback from Darkness and Light has been amazing and it has been my best-reviewed album to date,” John said. “When I was finishing it, a lot of my friends felt like it was my best work and I felt the same so I was more excited than nervous for people to hear it. I don’t go too much into the numbers and charts, what’s more important is that people love it and I’ve heard they do.”
Aside from his new music, John has also been busy working on the critically acclaimed film La La Land. Not only does he star in the movie, but he also executive produced it. Of the hit movie, John said: “I loved it and it was really fun to be a part of it. I loved working with Ryan [Gosling] and I didn’t work much with Emma [Stone] but she’s a wonderful actress and did great in the movie. It was a really cool experience to be part of something so special and meaningful to so many people…There will definitely be more acting and producing films as well. We have a production company called ‘Get Lifted Production Company’ and we are the executive producers of La La Land and we have a couple of new movies releasing next year.”
During his interview with FAULT, John also spoke about America, and raising his daughter Luna under Trump’s presidency. “Hopefully ‘Trump’s America’ won’t last very long and we get him out of here within the next four years. By the time Luna is old enough to be aware of what is happening, America would have elected a far better president. Trump promised to do things which are really bad for the country and some which are good and the hope is he’ll just do the good parts but I don’t have a lot of faith in him,” he said.
“I’m just hoping for the best and when we need to resist and speak out, we need to hit the streets and do it. For now, I’m more worried about the people less fortunate than my daughter, people who might lose their healthcare or get excluded because of the colour of their skin, their religion and country of origin.”
The full interview will be available in FAULT’s Special #25, which is available to pre-order now.
Darkness and Light is available to buy now.