2019 American Music Awards

Andra Day Remakes 'What The World Needs Now Is Love' For Hyatt Commercial and gives a Shout Out to Janelle Monae: Exclusive

Myriam Santos
Andra Day

Andra Day has recorded a resonant remake of the Hal David/Burt Bacharach classic, “What The World Needs Now Is Love,” for Hyatt Hotels’ new World of Hyatt campaign. 

The spot will premiere during the 89th annual Academy Awards on Sunday but Billboard has a sneak peek at the 60-second commercial, which opens with a Muslim woman on a bus and runs through several scenarios as people from various cultures form human connections despite their differences. 

Filmed in Thailand, Morocco and Spain earlier this year, the commercial is a part of a global platform for the chain that stresses community and understanding. A spokesperson for Hyatt says the ad was in the works long before President Donald Trump’s ban on refugees and people from seven Muslim-majority countries. 

“In the ad, we spotlight different cultures and distinct environments and show how listening, extending a thoughtful gesture and connecting with one another can help bring people together and understand each other,” the chain states in a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the commercial. 

That idea is what attracted Day. “I think that made me want to partner with Hyatt is the campaign itself. More than that, I just love that they are using their brand, their name, their platform to bring this message to people globally. It’s an incredible reach. It’s an incredible message and my heart is of the same kind.”

The song is a reminder to practice kindness. “Right now the world is full of opinions, which is always fine, and full of agendas and people making things out to be a certain way and they aren’t listening to each other,” Day continues. “That requires love and that requires selflessness.”

In the behind-the scenes video, Day also reveals that she’s rooting for Hidden Figures for the Oscars, and even though her fellow artist Janelle Monae is not nominated, she has a great fan in Day. “This being her first sort of move into film and into movies and for it to be nominated for an Oscar is amazing,” Day says. “I admire her so much as an artist and it’s a testament to how detailed and how deeply engaged and convicted she is when it comes in her work. When the Oscars come [on], I’ll be sitting on my sofa eating a bunch of food, rooting for you, Janelle.” 

Day has linked herself with a number of brands previously -- most notable Apple, which featured the Warner Bros. artist and Stevie Day in a 2015 commercial performing “Someday At Christmas.” Additionally, lyrics to her breakthrough song, “Rise Up,” appeared on more than 40 million Coca-Cola cups via a promotion between the soda brand and McDonald’s.

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