Music Article

Party Like It's 1985

Jermaine Dupri plans ''We Are the World'' anniversary remake. The producer plans to recruit stars like Usher and Kanye West to perform on the follow-up to the 1985 famine relief single

Producer Jermaine Dupri was nominated for four Grammys this week for his work with Usher and Alicia Keys, but he wants to make Grammy night a work night. He tells MTV News he's planning to follow up the Feb. 13 awards gala in the record studio, cutting a 20th anniversary follow-up to the all-star charity single, ''We Are the World.'' Like that song, recorded in Jan. 1985 by stars who had attended the American Music Awards ceremony hours earlier, the new song, ''We Are the Future,'' will enlist today's big stars in an awards show afterparty/recording session. Proceeds will go towards relief efforts for children in ''embattled countries'' around the world, Dupri's publicist said.

Dupri says he hopes to include such stars as Usher, Kanye West, and Jay-Z on the hip-hop-oriented track. (No word if Janet Jackson, Dupri's girlfriend, will also appear.) He says he was recruited to produce the track by Quincy Jones, who produced ''We Are the World,'' famously ordering the 40 or so superstars who participated to ''check your egos at the door.'' ''We're just gonna make it something extravagant,'' says Dupri. ''I'm looking forward to that. That's something you give your heart to. For Quincy to call me, that's my idol. I'm trying to make sure it's right.''

''We Are the Future'' follows a similar 20th anniversary remake of ''Do They Know It's Christmas,'' the famine relief benefit single that started the whole mid-'80s wave of all-star pop charity efforts that crested with Live Aid, the 1985 transatlantic rock concert recently released on DVD. Like the original, the remake of ''Do They Know It's Christmas'' features an all-Brit lineup of pop stars and was organized by Midge Ure, frontman of '80s New Wavers Ultravox.

Originally posted Dec 10, 2004