Video: John Legend and The Roots' "Wake Up Everybody"
The "Wake Up Everybody" clip starts with Roots MC Black Thought name-dropping Nina Simone and Marvin Gaye as he begins his radio show. Then, Legend, The Roots and special guest Melanie Fiona take to the steps of New York shortly after for the live band sequence. As Legend and Fiona harmonize, "The world won't get no better if we just let it be," a flashback to Vietnam protestors plays behind them and suddenly changes to modern day freedom fighters against the war in Iraq.
Common, the other featured guest, drops his verse via a 1970s throwback scene with the entire neighborhood in afros and bell bottoms, sitting on stoops and shooting the breeze. As he walks through the streets he too transitions to present day, ending up spitting into the mic behind Legend and Fiona, "Even in this generation living on computers/Only love, love, love can reboot us."
The video closes with Fiona and Legend crooning, "I need a little help y'all/Can't do this all by myself/Wake up everybody," as a slideshow of everyday workers - doctors, construction workers, teachers - flashes across.
"Wake Up!" is due in stores Sept. 21.