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John Legend‘s new single Preach has been called “powerful,” as it speaks of political injustice. Legend told the Tom Joyner Morning Show crew that it basically wrote itself, from him “just watching the news.”

He shared that when he makes new music the music usually comes first and then the lyrics.  After the instrumental is set he says he starts “mumbling” like he didn’t know what the lyric is until he plays with it for a little while and eventually the mumbles turn to lyrics.

Looking back he remembers auditioning for a local talent search as “Johnny Stevens,” before he was John Legend. He shares that he became John Legend back in the early 2000s when a friend began calling him “the legend” and they “just ran with it.”

This was before back when he was still selling demos out of his Honda. The determination to live up to his name is what helped him become the artist that he is today.

Hear the second half of his interview below:

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