When civil liberties icon Agent John Lewis died on July 17 at age 80, homages rolled in from political leaders, activists, stars, artists, andmore President Barack Obama made up, “He enjoyed this nation a lot that he risked his life and his blood so that it may live up to its promise. And through the decades, he not only offered all of himself to the reason for freedom and justice, but influenced generations that followed to try to live up to his example.” Intimate and individual remembrances also rolled in from Ava DuVernay, who tweeted, “What heat and wisdom he leaves behind for us”; Viola Davis, who made up, “Thank you for your service, for your dedication to alter and your nerve”; and Ice, who mentioned composed, “I’ve always appreciated your courage.”
It was all extremely fitting for a guy who ‘d devoted his life to remove for civil liberties for all, harkening back to his arranging and opposing efforts in the mid-century American South, where he assisted lead the March 7, 1965 march from Selma, Alabama to Montgomery to need ballot rights. That kind of spirit can’t die: “[Young people] need to continue to dream and never ever, ever give up on attempting to satisfy or make their dream end up being a living reality,” he informed MTV News in 2015.
That’s precisely the spirit celebrities like John Legend paid tribute to throughout an hourlong special entitled John Lewis: Commemorating a Hero, which aired Tuesday night (August 4) on CBS and throughout ViacomCBS platforms. Legend called Lewis “a warrior for justice” on Twitter after his death and made up, “Thank you for liking us so much that you devoted and risked your life to bring us closer to flexibility.”
For the Celebrating a Hero unique, Legend brought out the Oscar-winning tune “Glory” together with his co-collaborator Normal seen through crucial archive video, and via a virtual performance that happened on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma. Both made use of a green screen to perform the stirring ode they penned for the 2014 movie Selma, as directed by DuVernay.
Billy Porter was accompanied by Jon Batiste and a full band as he covered Sam Cooke’s 1964 immortal soul classic “A Modification is Gon na Come.” He damaged the phase as he summoned the force required to conjure up the sensational, recommending words of the staple, with Batiste in the background smashing things, melodically speaking, on the guitar.
The unique also consisted of Yolanda Adams, Jon Batiste, Common, Jennifer Hudson, Trevor Noah, and more paying tribute to Lewis’s life andwork Have a look at a couple of of the highlights above.
- John Legend