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John Legend defends Baby It’s Cold Outside rewrite: It was supposed to be silly!


Columbia RecordsAfter John Legend and Kelly Clarkson recorded a new version of the holiday standard “Baby It’s Cold Outside” with updated lyrics, they’ve been attacked for daring to mess with the original, despite people regarding the old lyrics as out-of-date and problematic. Now, John’s defending the new version, saying it wasn’t meant to be some big political statement.

As previously reported, the new version addresses concerns that male singer in the original song was pressuring the female singer to stay with him against her will, and may have even slipped something into her drink. Now, John tells the U.K. paper The Guardian, “The song was supposed to be silly!”

“It wasn’t supposed to be preachy at all. I never disparaged the old version,” he adds. “And, by the way, the original writer, or his family, gets paid for my version, too.”

John says the song has become emblematic of the backlash towards the #MeToo movement.

“It’s interesting…people thinking we’ve gone too far speaking up for a woman’s right to not get raped or sexually harassed, when some would argue we’ve not gone far enough,” John tells the paper.

“People think that because some people have lost their jobs, or have been expelled from Hollywood, like [Harvey] Weinstein, that we’ve gone too far,” he adds. “I don’t agree. But people wanted the ‘Baby It’s Cold Outside’ war to be a proxy war for all that.”

If you don’t like the song, John’s holiday album A Legendary Christmas includes plenty of other seasonal tunes to enjoy, including a duet with Stevie Wonder on Stevie’s song “What Christmas Means to Me,” plus new takes on “This Christmas,” “Please Come Home for Christmas,” “Christmas Time Is Here” and “Silver Bells.”

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