When Artists Unite: Classic Music Ensembles

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  • Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie, Quincy Jones, Ray Charles, Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, Cyndi Lauper, Bruce Springsteen, Willie Nelson
  • Dr. Dre, Ice-T, Eazy-E, Michael Concepcion, MC Ren, MC Hammer, Tone Loc, Young MC, J.J. Fad
  • KRS-One, Public Enemy, Heavy D, MC Lyte, Kool Moe Dee, Boogie Down Productions, Stetsasonic,
  • D'Angelo, Usher, R. Kelly, Brian McKnight, El Debarge, Tevin Campbell,Joe, Keith Sweat
  • Wyclef Jean, Jennifer Hudson, Mary J. Blige, Janet Jackson, Barbra Streisand, Jamie Foxx, Usher, Celine Dion, Lil Wayne, Akon, Kanye West will.i.am, Nipsey Hussle
  •  Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, Sojourner Truth, Assata Shakur, Angela Davis and Shirley Chisolm, Aaliyah, Mary J. Blige, En Vogue, Xscape, Karyn White, SWV, TLC, Me’Shell NdegéOcello, Vanessa Williams,Dallas Austin, Joi
  • Jermaine Dupri, Bono, Marvin Gaye, Usher, The Backstreet Boys, *NSYNC, Mary J. Blige, Destiny’s Child, Nelly, Alicia Keys, Britney Spears, Wyclef Jean, Christina Aguilera, Gwen Stefani, Jennifer Lopez
  • El DeBarge, Whitney Houston, Stacy Lattisaw, Lisa Lisa, Full Force, Teena Marie, Menudo, Stephanie Mills, New Edition, James “J.T. Taylor, Kurtis Blow, The Fat Boys, Grandmaster Melle Mel, Run–D.M.C., Whodini
  • Big Mike, The Notorious B.I.G.,  Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, Buckshot, Busta Rhymes, Coolio, Digable Planets, Heltah Skeltah, Ill Al Skratch, Jamal from Illegal, the Menace Clan , Redman
  • Ralph Tresvant, Bobby Brown, Randy Travis, Celine Dion, Luther Vandross, Michael Bolton, Garth Brooks
  • The Game, John Legend, Chingy, Patti La Belle and Celine Dion, Mya, Wyclef Jean, Ruben Studdard, Anthony Hamilton, Brian McKnight
  • MC Lyte, Meshell Ndegeocello, Nefertiti, Patra, Queen Latifah, Salt-n-Pepa, Left Eye, Da 5 Footaz, Yo-Yo

U.S.A. for Africa, "We Are the World"

It takes a village to raise a child and an ensemble to raise awareness. In 1985, parts of Africa were going through a famine and a number of recording artists came together as a collective called U.S.A. for Africa to record the hit single and album We Are the World. 

Written by Lionel Richie and Michael Jackson, and produced by Quincy Jones, the track was released on March 7, 1985, and sold over twenty million copies with the proceeds going toward famine.

The song featured over 40 artists that included Jackson, Richie, Stevie Wonder, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, Diana RossRay Charles and Cyndi Lauper.

As we conitnue to celebrate Black Music Month, read on for a look at more classic music ensembles that featured artists coming together for great causes. — Michael Harris (@IceBlueVA)

(Photo: Columbia Records)

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