John Legend Has All of Us — Man Crush Monday
John Legend is as smooth at they come. He's romantic, suave, intelligent and incredibly romantic. He wears our Man Crush Monday crown well.
John Roger Stephens, better known as John Legend, was born in Springfield, Ohio on December 28, 1978. At the age of four, Legend began playing piano and performed with his church choir by age seven. After high school, he received scholarships to attend Harvard, Georgetown and Morehouse, instead he went to Pennsylvania where he studied English.
While in college he founded Counterparts, a co-ed jazz and pop a Capella group. He held shows all around Philadelphia, eventually branching out to New York, Boston, Atlanta, and Washington D.C. Once he graduated, he began producing, writing, and recording his own music. Legend released two albums independently; a self-titled demo in 2000 and Live at Jimmy's Uptown in 2001.
His buddy Devo Springsteen then introduced him to Kanye West, who was up and coming at that time. West signed him to his label. He chose the stage name "John Legend" after poet J. Ivy told him that his music sounded like one of the legends, therefore that's what Ivy would call him.
In December 2004, Legend released Get Lifted, with singles like "Used to Love U" and "Ordinary People." The album was certified gold. He became a sought after collaborator and worked with artists like Fort Minor, Sergio Mendes, Jay-Z, Mary J. Blige, The Black Eyed Peas, Stephen Colbert, Rich Boy, MSTRKRFT, Chemistry, Fergie, Michael Jackson, and more.
Legend's second album, Once Again, came out in October 2006 and featured songs like "Heaven", "Save Room", and "Family Affair." Evolver, his third album was released in 2008 with the lead single being "Green Light." In 2009, Legend and The Roots recorded a collaborative album called Wake Up! which was released in 2010, with the songs "Wake Everybody Up", "Shine", and "Hang On in There."
Love in the Future, Legend's fourth album was released in September 2013. The album took two years to make. It featured songs like "Dream", "Caught Up", "Love in the Future", and "All of Me." The last of which earned him a No. 1 song on iTunes and a No. 2 spot on Billboard. "All of Me" is a ballad dedicated to his wife.
On September 14, 2013 Legend married model Chrissy Teigen in Italy. The two had been dating for seven years before he popped the question. Many speculated that in early 2013, Teigen had given Legend an ultimatum to marry her by the end of the year. Rumor has it, Legend was linked to Jessica White, Wafah Dufour and Danielle Abreu before meeting Teigen.
Legend is also extremely philanthropic. He teamed up with Tide laundry detergent in 2007 to raise money for St. Bernard Parish in Slidell, Louisiana to help with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He started the Show Me Campaign that same year and became the spokesman for GQ Magazine's "Gentlemen's Fund." Legend has also done work for the AIDS Service Center NYC, Hope for Haiti Now, Teach for America, the Education Equality Project, Harlem Village Academics, Stand for Children and many, many more. He is also an avid supporter of women's rights.