January 29th, 2010
10:52 AM ET

'We Are the World' gets a 2010 update for Haiti

Quincy Jones is pulling together another all-star team for a remake of perhaps the most well-known charity song, "We Are the World."

So far, Jones has Wyclef Jean, Rickey Minor, Justin Bieber, Jason Mraz and Lionel Richie on deck for the millennial remix, not to mention Sugarland, Anthony Hamilton and Julianne Hough. The recording session will take place on Monday, February 1, in the exact same A&M Records recording studio as the "We Are the World" recording did in 1985. All proceeds for the album will go towards Haiti's relief efforts.

Richie co-wrote the original record with Michael Jackson for African famine relief, and the single was a massive success. MJ and Richie were joined by Bruce Springsteen, Diana Ross, Cyndi Lauper, Tina Turner, Bob Dylan and Stevie Wonder, among a host of others.

Jones hasn't released the complete list of performers yet, but more information should come after Monday's studio session. One person who will not be there, however, is Taylor Swift.

There were Internet rumors circulating Thursday that Swift and Kanye West would be able to join hands and sing together for a charitable cause, but Swift's representative said that wasn't true.

"It will be a wonderful event, but Taylor is flying out to Australia the same night as the Grammys, right after the show, to start her tour," her representative told CNN.

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Filed under: Jason Mraz • Kanye West • Music • Taylor Swift

soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. Adley

    I have study some of the posts on your blog now, and I prefer your style of writing a blog. I included it to my favorites web page record and checking back in the near future.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:48 pm | Report abuse |
  2. δονητές

    You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this topic to be actually something that I think I would never understand. It seems too complex and extremely broad for me. I'm looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it!

    September 12, 2011 at 4:28 am | Report abuse |
  3. High Pressure Cleaner :

    Enrique Iglesias did inherit the charm of his father, he has a great singing career:-"

    October 22, 2010 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Angelina Ramirez

    Tina Turner is one of the living legends of music',*

    September 29, 2010 at 2:52 am | Report abuse |
  5. Amy Morris

    Enrique Iglesias is just as good as his father when it comes to those love songs'*`

    August 31, 2010 at 2:58 am | Report abuse |
  6. Henry Anderson

    Tina Turner offers a great vocal range and such powerful voice~"`

    August 2, 2010 at 12:18 am | Report abuse |
  7. Ava Davis

    Tina Turner will always be a legend in music history.:;-

    July 4, 2010 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  8. deadra

    Im sorry for the people on here that dont think the celebritys arent recognizable or not house hold names, your kidding right??? Celine dion, Barbra Streisand,jonas bros, pink,jennifer hudson, josh groban to name a few.Streisand alone is bigger than any of the cast now or then to be involved, and before you tell me how much you dont like her etc. i suggest you do your homework , shes the only artist whos won every major award in the entertainment business and being the ONLY artist to have # 1 albums in 5 decades.I didnt say you had to like these people but they are definatley recognizable and house hold names. markmarks also hit it right on the head with the nail.

    February 3, 2010 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
  9. Pam

    Get back as many of the originals as possible!! Like an earlier post, most of the names mentioned to do it this time are not recognizable, and will just not be the same. In other words, DON'T DO IT without getting back as many of the originals as you can, and fill in gaps with the "unknowns."

    February 2, 2010 at 6:47 pm | Report abuse |
  10. kp

    Christina Aguilera is a MUST! I also agree with Mary J Blige, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw and Pink!

    February 2, 2010 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
  11. markmarks

    “Listen up people” the song “We are the World 2010” was put together for the sole purpose of helping Haiti survivors. It’s not a promo video for anyone in it. And while I think they could have done a better job musically you gotta see the bigger picture here…it’s about raising money to save destroyed lives.

    February 2, 2010 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
  12. joanie smith

    Oh, would someone please invite Steve Perry to sing? What an outstanding addition to the voices, his would be. We love you, Steve.
    Joanie

    February 2, 2010 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Afi K. James

    What the hell is this, this is a terrible remake, virtrually most of the singers and rappers are wasted in this thing, thi is a piece of trash.

    BIG THUMBS DOWN!

    February 2, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  14. brittany

    i heard that doing an interview at the grammys with quincy jones that they are still going to keep MJ's vocals in there and he was like we have all that under control thank God and i also heard that lil wayne is going to do bob dylans part, now that will be interesting.

    February 2, 2010 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  15. darlene d

    The original group of singers will not be performing in this second installment. Jay-Z, Beyonce, Lady GaGa, Taylor Swift, Usher, JLo,
    Alicia Keys didn't show. Here is the list of performers:

    The roster of artists made public by organizers includes: Carlos Santana, Orianthi, Jennifer Hudson, Jamie Foxx, Sugarland, Adam Levine, Jason Mraz, Earth Wind & Fire, Natalie Cole, The Jonas Brothers, T-Pain, Brian Wilson, Justin Bieber, Nicole Scherzinger, India.Arie, Julianne Hough, Mary Mary, Melanie Fiona, BeBe Winans, Mya, Tyrese Gibson, Anthony Hamilton, Raphael Saadiq, Gladys Knight, Keri Hilson, Joel and Benji Madden, Heart, Brandy, Pink, Musiq Soulchild, Miley Cyrus, Akon, Jordin Sparks, Celine Dion, Rob Thomas, Katharine McPhee, Jeff Bridges, Randy Jackson, Patti Austin, Kid CuDi, Usher, Will.i.am, Kanye West, LL Cool J, Issac Slade (of The Fray), Snoop Dogg, Nicole Richie, Trey Songz, Ethan Bortnick, Taryll Jackson, Taj Jackson, TJ Jackson, Vince Vaughn, Drake, Freda Payne, Faith Evans, Robin Thicke, Rashida Jones, Barbra Streisand, Jimmy Jean Louis, Enrique Iglesias, Zac Brown, Lil Wayne, Tony Bennett, Josh Groban, Sean Garrett, Harry Connick Jr., Al Jardine, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony (Bizzy Bone) and A.R.Rahman

    Rumor has it that Janet Jackson will be singing Michael's part.

    February 2, 2010 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Marcelo Assis - Sao Paulo, Brazil

    Great Quincy Jones! Thanks A&M Records! Fantastic!

    February 2, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  17. nenecats Houston

    Sometimes you don't tamper with perfection.

    February 2, 2010 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  18. nancy biddle

    Bring back the BOSS!! BRUCE...His lines were the most powerful in the original....Brucccccccccce

    February 2, 2010 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
  19. Mark

    Who are these people??? I think I just heard Michael Jackson roll over in his grave......VERY SAD.

    February 2, 2010 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  20. ouida wingfield

    Best TS doesn't want to do the charity. She can't sing anyway, just mess it up!!

    February 1, 2010 at 11:30 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Aya

    This is SINful!!!! How is that American artists would use their celebrity to endorse a poverty stricken nation that suffered a huge devastation when in fact just four years ago in our "own" background were our fellow Americans suffering from a similar tragedy when Hurricane Katrina desolated New Orlean's 9th ward? This is unbelievable that "our" celebrities are so much more comfortable supporting their neighbors than their own family. My mouth is wide open. Don't get me wrong, I'm supporting the relief efforts and have donated but just amazed at how slowly regarded our own people feel about us. Perhaps the revisited "We are the World" efforts could benefit both Haiti & New Orleans. Come on Quincy (Jones) & Lionel (Ritchie) step up and step right. New Orleans needs you too. God bless HAITI!!

    February 1, 2010 at 11:21 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Roberto Lobo

    I agree with most comments on mixing the original artists with modern day artists and actors. Actually all "celeb status artists should be involved. Please don't put any blame on Quincy Jones or the Artists , they are all doing this in good faith, Its the "business side of this that should be kept up with by the fans and the media.
    Follow the money!!
    I feel this once again could be heard around the world if it is done correctly. How do I know that for sure.
    Please see "We are the World Bob Wolf on you tube and look what happened that day in 1985. It was about unity of the people for me.
    Tragedies can happen to all of us at anytime and we as a world should be there for the fellow humans worldwide.
    Depending on the support of this record, we will ask the media of the world to once again play this record on a date we have picked out.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  23. peaches

    It would be cool if Actors were involded in the project not just musicians

    February 1, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Leslie

    Why not get a lot of the celebs from the original song and have them take part in this as well. I do think that they should work it out to where MJ's vocals are kept in the song. I remember when this song originally came out and there has been nothing to compare to it since. Quincy knows what he is doing so people should have a little faith in him, he is one of the best in the business!

    February 1, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Debra R

    Please...no Steve Perry....his ego is so massive it cannot be checked at the door... let's get with the now...Bon Jovi, Bono, Lady GaGa, Beyonce, Keith Urban, Darius Rucker....

    February 1, 2010 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
  26. marie

    Why don't all those artists that keep asking us the public to keep giving , to all give one million each then they can stop asking us, the unemployed and the ones that are working are barely making it, or afraid their job is next to cut, to keep giving.. They just keep going to award show after award show dressing up and posing like they are gods. That's why no one takes these people seriously. I mean we are in a recession and don't need the rich keep trying to make us feel guilty for just making it another day. Shame on them, I will never watch another award show again.

    January 31, 2010 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  27. ttw

    The idea is there for sure, but the names. Only one great, Lionel Richie. Justin Bieber give me a break. A kid from youtube. The rest, no idea who that are.

    God, MJ may just roll-over in his grave.

    RIP MJ!

    January 30, 2010 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Roberto Lobo

    Before anyone gives another dime to this record, I would suggest they look into where the money went for the charity in 1985. Over 61 million raised and never a statement of where it all went.
    Insiders say this event was planned with the Organizer of 1985 Ken Kragen, but there was very little interest. Then Haiti struck and it was automatically switched to that cause for more press.
    Many great celeb charities out there doing great work, but this isn't one of them in many opinions Im hearing.
    Competition with Simon Cowell, U2. and now WatW. Wouldn't you think they would all work under one roof? Nope, not enough pie to split!

    January 30, 2010 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  29. annabel

    Glad to hear that Taylor will not be there. Once again she has taken the higher road!

    kanye needs to realize he is trash and always will be. If Quincy chooses him to be part of this recording – I will not buy it. I have already made a donation to the Hatian cause and as a matter of principle would never put my hard earned money anywhere near that excuse of a person called kanye.

    January 29, 2010 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  30. mba

    With the recent tragic earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Kirk Franklin assembled numerous gospel artists in Nashville’s Quad Studios to lend their voices to “Are You Listening,” a song they all hope will inspire those devastated as well as raise much needed funds for Haiti. All proceeds from the record will be donated to charities involved in relief efforts.

    A new song has be written.

    January 29, 2010 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Musical Messages

    How about if they are going to redo a song, a good one would be: "If I Had A Hammer." ? I agree a new song, some people who can sing worth a hoot. Beyonce. Jennifer Hudson. Dylan. Cher. Beyonce. She is just soooooooo goood. Talk about a Soul Sister. Ay. Tina Turner, Patti LaBelle, Queen Latiffa. There's a few talented folk left. How about a song for Haiti from a Haitian?

    January 29, 2010 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Lily

    Wonderful of you, Q, to be organizing the event. I sort of feel, though,
    that it should be a new song but will trust you.

    Am I dreaming this but in 1985 when the original happened was there
    a day and time designated that all over our country (?world?) it was
    played on many radio stations and people were urged to blast it and
    get outside singing our hearts out. I remember getting my children
    and their friends outside to become part of the "happening". Am I
    dreaming or did something like this really happen ?

    Please respond, somebody.

    January 29, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Jman

    Eddie Vedder is a must for this.

    January 29, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  34. mike

    Compare the list from 1985 to the list for the "new" project. I hope there are some surprise artists that haven't been confirmed or announced yet since this appears to be pretty light on both talent and artists that people over 25 are familiar with. One of the great things about the original was combining then-current pop stars with classic artists.
    Don't think it will matter much – the Band Aid/USA for Africa projects helped focus news headlines on a issue that was not well known to the general public. Is there anyone who doesn't know what's been happening in Haiti? I expect that most people who are going to donate have done so at the level they can afford to.
    Though I would pay for a video of the tantrum Kayne is going to have when they tell Mr. Ego that he can't sing the whole thing himself, he can't claim that the line he sings is better than all the other lines in the song, or, best-case, they don't let him in the door of the studio.

    January 29, 2010 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  35. john

    get whitney whitney whitney

    January 29, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  36. samuels

    Rickey Minor, Justin Bieber, Anthony Hamilton and Julianne Hough. Who are these people??? Can't touch the line up from 85.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Terry

    Great Idea.. but get a new song and some star singers. Nobody will care with the names that are mentioned.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Meghan

    I agree with R,Kerr. Let's get some STEVE PERRY. If they MUST redo this CLASSIC song can we please get all living members of the original recording and THEN add skanky talentless people from today?! (Not that they are all skanky and talentless, but they sure don't make them like they used to)

    January 29, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Brent

    Bad Idea. Although it does parallel the mainstream today, in using previous songs to profit in the now. Try writing a new song that is directed fo Haiti. Maybe get better talent, too. Real mainstream talent so as to get the most people to give money to the cause. Oh...and by the way....I will not donate any money to something Kanye West is participating in, I will donate my money to better places.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Jojo

    This is gonna suck. Such talentless hags that they can't even write a new song for such a tragic event. Everything is recycled these days because we live in a bland world of medicrity with regards to creativity. Just another attempt to make a profit from someone elses success. I wonder how much of the profits will actually go to Haitian relief.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Shore

    This idea sounds HORRIBLE.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Jacob

    Please think about adding a virtual Ray Charles and MJ into the song!! But consider adding Patti Labelle, Gloria Estefan, Jon Bon Jovi, Clay Aiken, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Barry Manilow, Michael McDonald, Britney and Garth Brooks to record the song!! That would be awesome!!!

    January 29, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Craig

    That's the best he could do? Looks like Q's influence has slipped in the music world.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Nick

    I love Q, but this is a terrible idea.

    We Are The World worked the first time because it was an original song with amazing artists sharing their individual interpretations.

    The artists listed might be successful, but can't musically or artistically hold a candle to the artists of old.

    This reminds me of other terrible group re-make efforts for charity like the "Tears in Heaven" and "What's Going On" Both lacked real depth. . . this one will be even worse. Even Auto-tune can't save this bad idea.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  45. CMN

    Way to go Quincy. How about getting Bon Jovi, Bono, Pink, Beyonce, Mary J. Blige, Bruce Springsteen, Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Garth Brooks, just to name a few, if they are not already on the list. Looking for the video, albumn and maybe even an HBO special.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Kat

    Couldn't agree more with R. Kerr and Jon. All those original musicians did an absolutely astounding job. Each had a place in making the song what it was in 1985, as well as popular enough to remake now in light of the Haiti disaster. None of the above mentioned artists has anywhere near the legendary presence or talent of the original musicians. I would wager that if any or all of the true talents who first sang the song were to remake it, this would be a tremendous success for the Haiti relief efforts. Let the Kanye's and other virtual unknowns take their attempts at music somewhere else. Get Steve Perry, Huey Lewis, Kenny Loggins, The Boss, Cyndi Lauper, a virtual MJ, Kenny Rodgers, Darryl Hall, Kim Carnes, etc., together, and the sales of this would be astronomical.

    January 29, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  47. mba

    Leave the original alone. Check out the gospel song by Kirk Franklin and many others under – Artist United for Haiti singing – Are You Listening.

    January 29, 2010 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Mark Pinto

    I think it's a shame that they are remaking the song instead of performing a new song. It should be the spirit of the song that needs to be captured rather than a remake. Lets be real, We Are the World was not a terrific song, in and of itself. Rather, it was the ensemble who sang it that made it special. That is what needs to be recaptured.

    January 29, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Nick B

    It's a new age now. Sure, individuals like Michael Jackson and Bob Dylan were legends of their time, and still are now... but we are also building a new legacy of music with an even greater legion of fans. The music industry isn't on a decline at all. The music industry is moving forward and developing, just like all great things in this wonderful world that we live in.

    January 29, 2010 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Bae

    I agree with Jon...there's not ONE name on that list that really jumps out at you the way the original listing did with Lionel, Quincy and Mike...I take nothing from those artist but the quick output of music today seems to have a great deal MISSING...

    January 29, 2010 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Katherine

    Please make sure that the moron of Kanye West behaves himself!

    January 29, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Brad

    Quincy you are the man!! I knew you were working on this and commend highly for your knowledge, skills and willing to assist the human species.

    January 29, 2010 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Ellen Spark

    Please line up Noah Witherspoon... his blues are so great!! He is one voice for charity that should be heard... caught him at his last gig in Dayton, Ohio!

    January 29, 2010 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Louie

    You cant even think of doing "We Are The World" with out Michael. I just dont see how you could redo a song with out him in it. I say Quincy should get a new song written quickly and sell that off. Some things should never be touched. I know the names listed havent been fully released but none of them so far match the magnitude of what WE ARE THE WORLD was when it released. MJ was in his prime. i mean that was a whos who of music. Quincy, create a new anthom for Haiti, and leave a classic alone.

    Love ya MJ, THIS IS IT!

    January 29, 2010 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  55. TN

    Brittany,,,,

    Leave as is...and let the stars of 'today' do as they are about to do.
    Trust me, Quincy is the best at what he does and I think not just for the relief of Haiti, but do maybe do it in for MJ as we all know what a great humanitarian he himself was. MJ would have done the identical same thing.

    I say OK to the new starts and I believe that they will do the song justice so that the money will pure in as it did with the orginial for aid to Africa.

    K? It'll be OK just wait to see/hear.

    Go for it Quincy....

    January 29, 2010 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Cliff

    Bless you Q.

    January 29, 2010 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Tim

    I think it will be good and beneficial.

    I would prefer if they did an original song:

    One like 14 year old Taylor Ivana's – Lonely Place (on Youtube)

    January 29, 2010 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Pieatro

    Will Diana Ross be asked to be apart of this production?

    January 29, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Linda Patterson

    Ahhh! too bad Ms. Swift won't be there. Go, get that money girl. I'm not mad at ya. It's time WE all move on from the Kanye/Taylor incident. Believe it or not life does on go.

    January 29, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Jon

    The lineup for the new version is indicative of the music industry's sad decline: Not ONE of those names is a household word. While many of these artists are certainly talented, none of them are world-changers like Stevie or MJ...I recognize the impact of the internet on music – and yet, I STILL think that music sales would jump if the music were BETTER.

    January 29, 2010 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Sheryl

    Let's hope they get permission to add in Michael's track from the original version.

    January 29, 2010 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  62. brittany

    why would you do a remake of such an incredible song that involved great talents and legends like ray charles, bob dylan , and the greatest Michael jackson and much more. i know that the horrible thing that took place in haiti was and still is speechless when it comes to this song i think that Quincy jones should just leave it alone and make the original which is awesome the song that can and bring in a lot of money to those who are suffering over in Haiti, just beause the artist today are popular and all that jazz doesnt mean they have the same level of talent as those who made the song what it is, Quincy should just write a new song and does lionel riche know about this and it would be great to leave MJ's vocals in it as well

    January 29, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  63. R.Kerr

    They need to get Steve Perry to join the group! He did an awesome job the first time and I'm sure he would do the same now.

    January 29, 2010 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  64. Debra R

    Thank you Quincy...

    January 29, 2010 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |

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