John Legend

December 28, 1978

John Legend Artistfacts

  • John Legend began playing the piano at the age of 4. He told Q magazine: "I was four and I begged my mom to get me piano lessons. I was a precocious little kid. There was a lot of music in our house so I think me wanting to play was me trying to be a part of what was going on. It was a chance to perform."
  • Legend met his model wife Chrissy Teigen on the video shoot for "Stereo." He recalled to UK Cosmopolitan magazine: "It was kind of touchy-feely and like a very backwards introduction - before we even knew each other, we were feeling each other up! So that helped break the ice. It wasn't a proper date but it was sexy."
  • Legend married Chrissy Teigen on September 14, 2013 in Como, Italy and the black-and-white video for "All Of Me" shows scenes from the newlyweds' honeymoon in Italy. There's also actual footage of their first kiss as a married couple.
  • His birth name is John Stevens. Legend chose his performing moniker as he perceived it to have an old-school sound. The singer told Billboard magazine: "You have to have enough confidence in yourself to say, 'Hey, I could do this.' And part of that was saying, 'Hey, I'm gonna go ahead and assume this kind of heavy, bold name' and try to go out there and live up to it."
  • He was introduced to Kanye West in 2001 by his college roommate Devo Springsteen, who is also West's first cousin. Legend was hired to sing during the hooks of the then up-and-coming hip-hop artist's music and his contribution to "Jesus Walks" made him an "it" voice. The pair have since regularly contributed to each other's albums.
  • John Legend is very intelligent. After graduating from North High School, he had scholarship offers from Harvard, Georgetown and Morehouse. Legend elected to attend the University of Pennsylvania, where he majored in English with an emphasis on African American literature.
  • John Legend keeps to a certain routine for life on tour and a different one for life at home when he's working on his music. He explained during a Reddit AMA: "On tour, I'm focused on resting my voice and staying physically prepared to give a great show every night. I don't talk much during the day. I don't drink alcohol on tour. I drink lots of water. I work out in the morning. I make sure I take a nap before the show.... "

    "When I'm writing the album, I like to schedule writing sessions rather than just hope inspiration randomly comes to me. I like to schedule my creativity so that I'm more proactive about searching for inspiration. It makes me more productive and prolific. Every song won't be great, but I create 50-80 songs every album, in the hopes that a significant portion will be great."
  • The first album that John Legend played on was The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. While in college, a friend introduced Legend to Lauryn Hill, who then hired him to play piano on "Everything Is Everything."
  • John Legend won the 2015 Best Original Song Oscar for "Glory," the theme to Selma.
  • In 2014 John Legend told US magazine that he eats half a rotisserie chicken before every performance.
  • Legend's first paid acting gig was as one of Kyra Sedgwick's lovers in 2005's Loverboy.
  • In 2018, Legend produced and portrayed the title figure in the NBC adaptation of the Jesus Christ Superstar rock opera. He received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for his role as a producer of the show, making him the 15th person (and the first black man) to complete the his rare and coveted Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony (or EGOT) status.

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