John Legend: A Legend In The Making
March 6th, 2018
Photo credit: Billboard
Known globally as John Legend, John Roger Stephens was born on December 28, 1978 in Springfield, Ohio to Ronald Stephens, a factory worker and a former National Guardsman and Phyllis Elaine, a seamstress.
John was born in a musically-inclined family. His mother directed a church choir, his father and brother played drums while his grandmother played organ.
The young John Legend showed interest in music at the age of seven when he started to play the piano. His mother homeschooled him for several years for his elementary years and after high school he attended the University of Pennsylvania despite various offers from other universities. He took English majoring on African American literature. During his college days, the singer served as a president and musical director of a jazz and pop acapella named Counterparts.
John Roger Stephens started his career performing in nightclubs as well as front acts for some shows throughout the country. He was then introduced to rising hip-hop artist Kanye West wherein he sang the hook of West’s song. Stephens signed under West’s label wherein he released his debut album ‘Get Lifted’. John chose name John Legend from an idea that was given to him by J.Ivy because of his ‘old-school sound’. ‘Get Lifted’ went platinum thanks to his hit single ‘Ordinary Single’ which was originally written for the Black Eyed Peas.
In 2006, the singer released his second album ‘Once Again’ which debuted at no. 3 on the US Billboard 200. The single ‘Heaven’ has won Legend his second Grammy Award for best Male R&B Vocal Performances. In 2008, his album ‘Evolver’ was a greater success which landed at the fourth spot on the US Billboard 200. In 2010, Legend won the Grammy Award for Best R&B album for ‘Wake Up!’. In 2015, He won an Oscar for the song ‘Glory’ which he sang for film ‘Selma.’
His latest album ‘Darkness and Light’ was released in 2016. The album is composed of his hit singles such as ‘Love Me Now,’ and ‘I Know Better.’ It is the same year where John Legend played a major role in the Oscar-winning film ‘La La Land.’
Listen to some his hit song via Spotify below: