John Legend X FAULT Magazine Issue 25 Covershoot

John Legend discusses La La Land, Trump’s America and family values in FAULT Magazine #25 ‘US Special’

 

 

For this special edition issue, we’ve teamed up some of the USA’s most talented migrant photographers with popular stars in entertainment who have managed to excel despite growing racist, homophobic and sexist sentiment in the land they call home.
 Check back with FAULT Magazine next week for our second reveal!

 

Casting my mind back to 2005 and the re-emergence of outlandishly dressed musicians and over-the-top performances that had to be done for a fleeting spot in the top 20; it’s humbling that one shy man and his piano have stood the test of time. Fast-forward to 2017 and John Legend is now a household name with six albums under his belt, a family and most recently starred in and executively produced the Oscar-tipped blockbuster movie ‘La La Land’. I caught up with John to discuss music, family life and fears to discover if “Legend” is more than just a name.

Words by Miles Holder

Photography Lionel Deluy @loveartistsagency | Styling by Cat Wennekamp at Celestine Agency| Grooming by Juanita Lyon using Baxter of California at Celestine Agency | Retouching by Julia Idiar | Special Thank You to US Alteration for use of their location

How do you think you’ve changed as a person since your debut all those years ago?

I’ve grown up a lot in the last twelve years and had a lot more life experiences. Getting married and having a baby have added new perspectives and depth to the subjects I sing about too. Just from living in the world and seeing more contemporary issues have added new layers to my music which weren’t there before.

 

What advice would you give to your younger self?

My life has turned out pretty well so I wouldn’t change much but I would want myself to be bolder growing up. I was shy in college and I would tell myself to be more willing to come out of my shell and dare to be confident.

 

You’re married with a baby daughter; do you think the positivity they bring to your life spreads throughout the album?

I think I’ve always been an optimistic person and I think that streak of optimism runs through each of my albums. I think there is just more depth to what I’m feeling because everything means more to me now I have a wife and daughter. Everything is more significant and I’m thinking more philosophically about things and thinking about life and death a lot more. Before what I sang about were my ambitions of making money, getting girls and having fun which was a lot more selfish but now I have better perspective and depth on what’s really important in life.

 

Raising a bi-racial daughter in Trump’s America, does that scare you?

Hopefully “Trump’s America” won’t last very long and we get him out of here within the next four years. By the time Luna is old enough to be aware of what is happening, America would have elected a far better president. Trump promised to do things which are really bad for the country and some which are good and the hope is he’ll just do the good parts but I don’t have a lot of faith in him.  I’m just hoping for the best and when we need to resist and speak out, we need to hit the streets and do it. For now, I’m more worried for the people less fortunate than my daughter, people who might lose their healthcare or get excluded because of the colour of their skin, their religion and country of origin.

 

Fans have differing ideas of what a John Legend album should sound like. Is that added pressure when it comes to releasing new music?

Not everyone is going to be happy with every album and with every song but when I put music out, I do it with the confidence that my fans will love it or at least give it a chance. The feedback from Darkness and Light has been amazing and it has been my best-reviewed album to date. When I was finishing it, a lot of my friends felt like it was my best work and I felt the same so I was more excited that nervous for people to hear it. I don’t go too much into numbers and charts, what’s important is that people love it and I’ve heard they do.

From the album title, I presumed the songs would be either extremely high octane songs or heart-wrenching ballads but listening to the lyrics, for the most part, it’s an uplifting album and I wondered if that was always your intention?

I think what the title means to me is that darkness and lightness always coexist and theirs a push and pull and it’s not really about one song being dark and one being light as you said you expected, it’s about mixing it all into one song. In Surefire I talk about a nightmare but regardless “I’m surefire” and that’s me inviting darkness and light into one song.

 

What scares John Legend?

Rats! I’m really scared of rodents.

 

La La Land has received rave reviews, how was that whole experience?

I loved it and it was really fun to be a part of it. I loved working with Ryan and I didn’t work much with Emma but she’s a wonderful actress and did great in the movie. It was a really cool experience and to be part of something so special and meaningful to so many people.

 

What is your FAULT?

I don’t like confrontation. Sometimes that’s good because I’m good at keeping the peace but when in times when you have to confront things head on I’ve never been good at that.

 

Read John Legends full interview and see more exclusive photographs only in FAULT’s Special #25

AVAILABLE TO PRE-ORDER NOW

 

FAULT attends the 2017 NME Awards with ID&C

 

 

“We have more readers today than any other time in our history” exclaims Mike Williams as he opens the 2017 NME awards to roaring applause. While NME has gone through a number of editorial shifts in lifespan of over 50 years, good music has always been at its core and last night was certainly no exception. With performances from Bastille, Wiley and The Petshop Boys – the night’s lineup was a glimpse at just how diverse the UK music scene is. Those weren’t the only performances of the night however, FAULT Alumni Dua Lipa and Charli XCX also took to the stage the latter as part of Bands4Refugees.

Christine and The Queens picked up the first award of the night for ‘Best International Female supported by VO5’ but would also later return to the stage to accept a second win for ‘Best Track supported by Red Stripe’ for her critically acclaimed single, ‘Tilted’. Moments before taking to the stage, Dua Lipa fought of tough competition from Anderson .Paak and Zara Larsson to collect the award for Best New Artist supported by TOPMAN.

Wiley’s performance was definitely a highlight of the night. Grime might not have ever gone away but it certainly has seen a huge surge in plays over the past year and who else but the ‘Godfather’ should have been up on that stage. Performing ‘Speakerbox’ and ‘Can’t Go Wrong’ from his latest album, it was great to see Wiley had finally received the recognition he deserved.

Of course, the night isn’t all about music with Louis Theroux collecting his award for Best Film for ‘My Scientology Movie’, Fleabag winning for Best TV Series and Glastonbury winning for best festival.

Best British Female Artist went to M.I.A who took the chance to speak out against the current administration attitude towards refugees before appropriately introducing Bands4Refugees – a group comprising of Olly Alexander, Slaves’ Isaac Holma, Charli XCX and more in aid of supporting refugees worldwide. [You can text REFU to 70700 to contribute £5 to Help Refugees]

NME Coverstars and winners of the ‘God-like Genius Award’ The Petshop Boys closed the night with a spellbinding set and mesmerising light show which closed the evening.

So what’d we think? We had a great time – it was wonderful to see so many familiar FAULTfaces have gone on to do such great things. From both FAULT Magazine #24’s Maya Jama and Frank Carter of Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes presenting awards, to FAULT #16’s Charli XCX performing live and to FAULT #23’s Dua Lipa collecting an award – it’s wonderful to see that everyone is still active in their craft.

For what was quite a dismal year in music, it’s great to see that the arts still managed to flourish in 2016 and it’s that, that was appreciated last night by NME. We look forward to seeing what else is to come in 2017. Thank you to our friends over at ID&C, who provided the fabric wristbands for NME Awards, for inviting us along. Find out more information about  wristband for events on the ID&C website.

 

 

FAULT Playlist Of The Day: Anne-Marie’s Anti Valentine’s

 

If (like the rest of us) you’re done with caring about Valentine’s day and couldn’t care less what great present Val from accountings new “bae” has delivered to the office, then we’ve found the perfect playlist for you!

Curated by FAULT favourite and Issue 23 star Anne-Marie, the aptly named “Anti Valentine’s” playlist can be listened to in full below. Alongside the classics such as Destiny’s ChildSurvivor’ and Lily Allen’s ‘Fuck You’ – you’ll also find Anne-Marie’s brand new single ‘Ciao Adios’. The first single release from Anne-Marie in 2017 and a obvious crowdpleaser from her 2016 tour, Ciao Adios is yet another “goodbye and so long” track to blast this valentine’s day.

Plug your headphones and get those middle fingers in the air this valentine’s day!

FAULT Magazine Featured Playlists: Lily Allen’s ‘He’s got the whole world, in his tiny hands’

 

It’s a strange day. As many of our staff prepare themselves for the ‘Women’s March On London‘ tomorrow (we hope to see you there) the world is shifting and as young creatives, not in the direction we’d hoped. Never the less, these strange times do have their silver lining and in the previous months we’ve watched as our creative inspirations have used their platform to promote our shared concerns.

Today we feature musician Lily Allen’s ‘He’s got the whole world, in his tiny hands’ playlist. If you follow Lily Allen’s work or Lily generally on social media, you’ll no doubt know where she stands on certain political issues but in her own words “I decided to not argue with people about the inevitable for the day, and made a Spotify playlist to commemorate this miserable occasion.”

Enjoy Lily’s playlist below.

 

 

LFWM AW17, EDITOR’S PICKS: DAY FOUR – FAULT MAGAZINE

Day 4 of LFWM featured the A/W ’17 collections of designers such as Belstaff and QASIMI . Below, FAULT’s Menswear Editor Kristine Kilty picks out her key looks from each of the aforementioned collections:

Belstaff

QASIMI

FAULT MAGAZINE REVIEWS SONGZIO LFWM AW/17

 

Day four of LFWM was smited by the great Tubepocalypse, but FAULT were undeterred, present and correct for Paris based Korean fashion house SONGZIO AW17 show. The SONGZIO collection was a sublime effort, beautifully designed and crafted menswear that left us in awe; leaving no wonder to why GQ recently proclaimed that SONGZIO created “wearable art”!
Heavy on the black, and heavy on the Victorian influence: this Dickensian-esque collection (with the odd Hogwartian look thrown in for good measure!) was an homage to London’s past (and maybe also to the fog of recent weeks!), to the heritage of menswear and the male art of dressing; that which so long ago established this city as the epicentre of menswear. SONGZIO presented a strongly masculine collection, with a defined yet free flowing silhouette: modern classics inspired by the the rich heritage of menswear, and brought to life with splashes of neutrals, pinks, and vibrant orange. Many garments were ‘painted on’ /with painted linings beckoning seductively from beneath. Amongst the final looks, were several reminisce of the that worn by the cowboys of the old wild west; same era but very different continent; and given ‘Westworld’s’ recent success very timely!

FAULT MAGAZINE REVIEWS Ximon Lee LFWM AW/17

 

GQ China have become an established presence on the London menswear catwalks, each season showcasing some of the excellent Chinese design talent. This season it was the turn of H&M Design Award winner Ximon Lee, under his eponymous label XIMONLEE. Entitled “SHAME”, Lee delivered a sublime collection that was part fashion, part art; and a delightful musing on the modern male. Lee plays with structure and proportions, to propose his vision of menswear classics, and  responds to traditional notions of gender norms. Lee is also reflecting upon the societal ‘shame of our nudity’ that is the reason we cover up by dressing. At first glance we see beautiful over-sized outerwear and separates, that upon closer inspection reveal cutaways revealing glimpses of skin; the body the garments are otherwise hiding beneath their volumes. Collars are exaggerated and drape the shoulders. Sheer shirts and trousers are embroidered with pearls for a delicate yet masculine touch. Louche tailoring, leather bomber jackets band deconstructed leather bras and knitwear, out a killer offering from XIMONLEE. This is Mad Max in touch with his feminine side, this is wonderful!

WordsIan Michael Turner

FAULT MAGAZINE REVIEWS Masion Mihara Yasuhiro LFWM AW/17

 

Mihara’s AW17 show was undoubtedly inspired by cultures of different times and the possibly fashion holds through creativity. The collection challenged the view that the pursuit of simplicity is in fact complex. The garments on offer did not exude elaborate decoration or embellishment yet instead the search for subtle detail, silhouette and basic pieces that were elegantly classic.

Shown in an exposed brick setting, the models wore garments that followed the theme of tonal dressing. With an emphasis on outerwear, gradient shades of purple and dark maroon military coats were layered in a lightweight yet firm fabric. Structured battle jackets in black or green leather were detailed with simple zip hard wear and neutral coats in rust, cream and brown were belted with large buckles. The modern puffer was shown in crisp khaki and paired with over sized trousers and chunky leather shoes. Hooded pullovers in navy’s and greys and micro checked shirts presented an element of deconstructed tailoring that gave the collection that much sought after simplicity.

Words: Sarah Barnes