We Are the World 25 for Haiti

Twenty five years after it first swamped the world “We are the world” is back in all its glory and with an all new cast of singers. The original was designed to be a benefit single for African famine relief and was penned by Lionel Richie and the late Michael Jackson. The duo was given the task of writing the song by Harry Belafonte and Ken Kragen.

Richie is once again part of the song, this time as a conductor along with Quincy Jones who was also an integral part of the 1985 effort. “We are the World: 25 for Haiti” was initially not designed for the Haitian earthquake relief efforts, but with the unfortunate events that unfolded in Haiti, Richie and Jones decided to transform the commemorative effort into one that would once again be about relief.

The new version of the song features over 75 artists, updated lyrics and music. It also has a rap segment and a duet between Michael & Janet Jackson. The song was unveiled during the broadcast of the opening ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics on NBC. All of the proceeds generated by the song will be channeled through the We Are the World Foundation to support the relief efforts in Haiti.

The earthquake hit on January 12, 2010 leaving the country devastated with millions homeless. The death toll is eventually expected to top 200,000 in number.

The video, directed by Paul Haggis and the single, are available for purchase on iTunes.