Photo: Daniele Venturelli/WireImage
John Legend Launches "Can't Just Preach" Mini-Documentary Series
On Feb. 27, John Legend took the activism embodied in his latest song "Preach" a step further by releasing the first of his five planned "Can't Just Preach" mini-documentaries on YouTube, highlighting the work of community leaders in conjunction with Columbia Records and WeTransfer.
Legend debuted his song "Preach" at New York's Global Citizen Festival on Sept. 29, 2018. The video was released online on Feb. 15, 2019 with a powerful message that faith can create an appetite to change the world for the better. The video has already been viewed by more than 10 million and raised funds for Legend's Free America organization, which fights mass incarceration.
The first episode of "Can't Just Preach" builds on the song's message by focusing on the work of Sybrina Fulton and her Trayvon Martin Foundation. "I speak for all the Trayvon Martins, I speak for my son, I speak for your son, I speak for America," said Fulton. "I have to fight, I have to fight for the people that cannot fight themselves."
Subsequent episodes focus on—and raise money for—Jaclyn Corin from March For Our Lives, Desmond Meade from Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, Isa Noyola of Mijente, and Efrén C. Olivares of the Texas Civil Rights Project.
"John has proven himself to be such a powerful storyteller in so many different mediums and we feel a shared passion at WeTransfer to help craft and elevate these kinds of narratives," said WeTransfer Global Head of Music Jamal Dauda. "This project felt like a golden opportunity to bring forward diverse and necessary stories of social change, and we couldn't imagine better partners than John and his team to do so."
Legend has pledged a $100,000 donation to the #CantJustPreach campaign with $10,000 each going to the subjects of his five "call to action" YouTube mini-documentaries. "Your voice is loud enough and you're strong enough to make a change," said Legend. "It's up to us to get up and take action."