Happy Birthday John Legend

Happy birthday to John Legend, born December 28, 1978.

Happy birthday to John Legend, born December 28, 1978.

Philly-bred singer, songwriter and pianist John Legend was born John Stephens into a musical family in 1979, the grandson of a minister who spent much of his childhood singing and playing in church.  His family moved from Ohio to Pennsylvania when he was a child, and he was playing the piano and singing in the church choir from an early age.  The musical influences of his childhood included classic Soul and Gospel singers ranging from Stevie Wonder and Al Green to Shirley Caesar and Edwin Hawkins, as well as more modern acts like Jodeci and Boyz II Men (okay, I'm feeling kind of old when a singer cites Jodeci as a childhood influence).  He attended college at Penn and served as musical director at Bethel A.M.E. church for nearly a decade during high school and college. 

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