When John Legend burst onto the music scene in 2004, his song "Ordinary People" blazed up the charts and audiences were dazzled by his strong vocals and lyrics. Legend's debut album Get Lifted was an immediate success and would even be honored with Grammy awards. However, many people did not realize that before Legend released Get Lifted, he had been quietly working behind the scenes for several years. In fact, he'd even played piano on Lauren Hill's hit song "Everything is Everything" from her seminal album The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. John Legend has deep roots in music. From the time he was four years old he was performing with his local church choir. His academic performance was exceptional during his school years, and he was offered admittance to several Ivy League schools as a result. He chose University of Pennsylvania, where he applied himself to academic studies and also sang in an a cappella group. It was his lead vocals in an a cappella song at school that first won him acclaim. After graduating from college, Legend performed at various venues from Philadelphia all the way down to Atlanta, gradually expanding his audience and his network of music industry contacts. A chance meeting with rising superstar Kanye West led to Legend working with the rapper on several songs. In the years that followed, Legend continued to churn out even more albums and hits, including "Green Light," which was a collaboration with Andre 3000. In addition to his music career, Legend also established himself as a deeply involved philanthropist, lending his talents and name to important causes across the globe.