Lionel Richie wants to bring some unity to the world in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic. As millions of people are being affected by the virus each day, Richie believes that a remake of the 1985 classic “We Are The World” could help through these tough times.
“Every time I try and write another message, I write those same words,” he told People in an interview. “Two weeks ago, we said we didn’t want to do too much [about the song] because this is not the time to sell an anniversary,” Richie added. “But the message is so clear.”
“What happened in China, in Europe, it came here,” he continued. “So if we don’t save our brothers there, it’s going to come home. It’s all of us. All of us are in this together.”
The chorus line, “There’s a choice we’re making, we’re saving our own lives,” specifically resonates with Richie to this day.
“That line came about as Michael [Jackson] and I were sitting there talking,” he said. “We said, you can either say, ‘I’m saving my life’ or ‘We’re saving our lives.’ ‘We Are the World’ is a statement we wanted to make. What do we do to save our own?”
Richie, Jackson, Diana Ross, Cyndi Lauper, Kenny Rogers and over 40 other artists came together to record the original version of the song to raise money and awareness about the African famine. The song went on to earn over $63 million.
The proposed remake is receiving mixed reviews on social media. One user tweeted, “not only is this dumb because a song isn't gonna help the global pandemic and most people are donating as much as they can in this sudden recession, but also doing we are the world without Michael? unacceptable.”
Another user tweeted, “I have been thinking the same thing all week. Especially after recently rewatching ‘We are the World’.. I truly believe it is really needed with the world wide tragedies. I hope it could safely happen somehow.”
Check out the original version of “We Are The World” below.