"I try to write about universal themes and feelings, and when you get political, you lose some of that because people start aligning into camps," he told BBC about the inspiration behind his new music.
Darkness and Light was produced by Blake Mills, who also produced Alabama Shakes' Grammy Award-winning Sound & Color and has worked with artists like Fiona Apple and Sky Ferreira. In a statement about Legend's new album, Mills called Darkness and Light "John Legend's manifesto," and added it was bout Legend's "long-standing devotion to social justice, the challenges and rewards of a marriage constantly in the public eye and the recent birth of his first child, Luna." Legend himself told fans exactly what he thought of the album during a Facebook live broadcast. "I think it’s my best work yet."
Earlier this year, Chrissy Teigen gave birth to the couple's first child, Luna, who inspired two songs on the album and makes an appearance alongside her parents in the music video for "Love Me Now." The video spotlights Legend's own family as well as important places around the world including Orlando's Pulse Nightclub and the Domiz Refugee Camp in Northern Iraq.
The album features collaborations with Chance the Rapper on the previously released "Penthouse Floor," Miguel, and Brittany Howard. There are some bonus tracks that will only be included on the Target version of the album including "Drawing Lines, "What You Do to Me (Piano Demo)," and "Love You Anyway."
Listen to Darkness and Light on iTunes here or stream it below via Spotify.