[artist id="854"]Mary J. Blige[/artist] wore all black as she stood in the middle of the stage in New York, singing with conviction and hope during Friday night's (January 22) "Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief" telethon.
The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul sang "Hard Times Come Again No More" during the emotional event.
" 'Tis the song, the sigh of the weary," she sang with might. "Hard times, hard times, come again no more/ Many days you have lingered all around my cabin door/ Oh hard times, come again no more/ While we seek mirth and beauty and music, light and gay/ There are frail forms fainting at the door/ Though their voices are silent, their pleading looks will say/ Oh hard times, come again no more."
"Hard Times Come Again No More" was written by Stephen Collins Foster way back in 1855. It was sung during the civil war, and over the past century, legends such as Johnny Cash, Bruce Springsteen, Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan and Mavis Staples have performed the record in their own special way.
Mary J. Blige belted every note with soul: "There's a song that will linger forever in our ears/ Oh hard times, come again no more."
Blige is just one of many performers who will appear as part of the global telethon. Alicia Keys, Wyclef Jean and Taylor Swift are among other acts.
iTunes customers can exclusively pre-order the "Hope for Haiti Now" full-performance album ($7.99) and the full two-hour video telecast ($1.99). Pre-orders will be delivered in the days following the telethon. Individual audio performances will also be available for purchase and download for 99 cents each in the days following the telethon. Apple, the record labels and the artists will donate their share of the proceeds to Haiti relief funds managed by "Hope for Haiti Now" charities, including the Red Cross and Wyclef's Yele Haiti foundation. Performances will also be available for purchase in the days following the event through Amazon's MP3 service and Rhapsody, through distribution provided by INgrooves.