Legend returns to "best" fans at World Cup

Thu May 27, 2010 8:00am EDT
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By Vuyani Ndaba

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters Life!) - Grammy-winning U.S. singer John Legend will be performing before his favorite fans when he takes the stage in South Africa on June 10 for the official soccer World Cup concert.

The 31-year-old will be one of a long lineup of African and global music stars singing at the Orlando stadium in Soweto, South Africa's biggest black township, a day before the month-long soccer tournament kicks off.

"I love coming to South Africa," Legend told Reuters in a telephone interview.

"My fans there are some of my best fans around the world. Actually they are my best fans, they give me such energy, they sing along to everything, and it's such a great vibe every time I have been there."

Legend is expected to be joined by the likes of Alicia Keys, Black Eyed Peas and Shakira along with African acts including Angelique Kidjo, BLK JKS, Hugh Masekela and Tinariwen at what is being billed as one of the continent's biggest ever concerts.

Organizers have included local as well as global stars for the gig amid concerns that South African music would not be fairly represented at the high-profile concert.

Legend said he aimed to collaborate with regional artists at the gig, proceeds from which will go to 20 Centres for 2010, FIFA's official social campaign for the World Cup aimed at positive change in Africa through football.

"I don't want to spill all the beans now, I want it to be more of a surprise when we get there, but we certainly will be collaborating with some African artists," Legend said.   Continued...

<p>John Legend performs during the Gulf Aid benefit concert at Mardi Gras World in New Orleans, Louisiana on May 16, 2010. The concert will benefit supporting wetlands/coastal environmental issues &amp; the well-being of fishermen, and the regional seafood industry. REUTERS/Sean Gardner</p>