John Legend doesn’t play around when it comes to teasing a video. The clip he released Tuesday (April 9) on behalf of new single “Who Do We Think We Are” featuring Rick Ross lasts just six seconds before it dissolves into a still photo of the singer/songwriter/musician. All you see during the entire 15-second span is a tuxedoed and seated Legend surrounded by stylishly dressed men and women holding court in an ornate room. All you hear are the beginning strains of the song before it echoes away.
The full video rolls out on Wednesday (April 17). “The song is about living life to the fullest,” Legend tells The Juice. “About not being afraid to be a risk-taker and to pursue your dreams. But it’s also about enjoying and luxuriating in your pursuits. So in some ways we made a fantasy video that shows some reveling… a little sex. It’s a gorgeous video that I think people will like.”
“Who Do You Think We Are” is the first single from Legend’s long-awaited fourth solo album “Love in the Future.” The G.O.O.D./Columbia release is due June 25. Right now, Legend says he’s busy finishing the mix on a couple of more songs with mastering slated in the next week or two.
In addition to Ross, with whom he’s collaborated in the past (including the single “Magnificent”), Legend reunites with longtime creative partners Kanye West and Dave Tozer. Also in the mix are collaborations with Bink (the current single), Hit-Boy, Da Internz, Q-Tip, 88 Keys and No ID.
“Over the years, I’ve been in a comfort zone with Kanye and Dave, and we’ve had great collaborations,” Legend says. “But this album also offers some fresh collaborations. And together that typifies the sound of this album. ‘Love in the Future’ has the feel of my first two albums [2004’s ‘Get Lifted’ and 2006’s ‘Once Again’] but takes that sound forward.”
Legend adds that while there are no duets on the album, there may be one more rap cameo (“We’re trying to figure that out now; it hasn’t been determined”). Otherwise, he says, it’s “mostly just me.”
As for whether the album contains another hit along the lines of 2005’s R&B top five “Ordinary People,” Legend cites a ballad called “All of Me.”
“I don’t want to predict how big it will get but it’s in the same league,” he teases. Also on the album will be “Dreams,” a ballad he previewed during his opening stint on Sade’s 2011 tour.
After postponing a planned tour last October in order to finish “Love in the Future,” Legend plans to launch a major U.S. tour in the fall. Until then, he’ll be doing some one-off shows and festivals in Europe.
Legend’s last solo studio album was 2008’s “Evolver,” featuring the hit single “Green Light.” In the five years since then, Legend — who has won nine Grammy Awards — partnered with the Roots on the 2010 album “Wake Up!,” performed on the aforementioned Sade tour, served as a judge on the 2012 ABC music show “Duets” and appeared that same year on G.O.O.D. Music’s “Cruel Summer” compilation.