R&B singer John Legend and The Roots band have joined for the release of "Wake Up!" available through Sony Music on September 21, 2010. The set, inspired by the Presidential election campaign of 2008, will feature soulful music from the 60s and 70s with hopes of inspiring change, awareness, consciousness and activism.
Featuring 11 songs, "Wake Up" is infused with sounds of gospel, rock, reggae and hip-hop, and includes tracks like "Wholly Holy" by Marvin Gaye, "Little Ghetto Boy" by Donny Hathaway, "Hard Times" by Baby Huey and the Babysitters and "Hang on in There," by Mike James Kirkland.
"These songs sound so relevant now," Legend said in a statement about the album, which originally started as a one-song idea. "On most of them, you wouldn't change a lyric. 'Wake Up Everybody' (the album's first single, featuring contributions from Melanie Fiona and Common) has four verses-the first one is a general statement, the second is about education, third is about health care, and the fourth is about making a better environment. No editing needed."
The album features one original composition, Legend's song "Shine," described as a "Stevie-Wonder-meets-gospel" track, which is featured in Davis Guggenheim's upcoming documentary film "Waiting for Superman."
In addition to "Wake Up!" The Roots released their ninth studio album, "How I Got Over," earlier this week (june 21).