Billy Joel remembers Stevie Wonder trying to teach Bob Dylan how to sing

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Billy Joel has shared his memories of recording the charity single ‘We Are the World’ in 1985, recalling how Stevie Wonder had to teach Bob Dylan how to sing like himself.

Recalling the recording experience on The Howard Stern Show, the New Yorker explained how his involvement in the single came about. He was already in Los Angeles for “one of those business weeks,” so he said “What the hell? This could be fun.”

It wasn’t long before he was standing next to Cyndi Lauper and singing ‘We Are the World’. The charity single supergroup featured an impressive roster of artists, including Diana Ross, Tina Turner, and Bob Dylan, the latter of whom apparently got shy when it came to recording his solo.

“Bob Dylan was shy to sing on his own,” Joel recalled, “so Stevie Wonder comes out and is telling Bob how to sing like Bob Dylan. ‘We are the world. We are the children.’ And Dylan’s like, ‘Okay, I think I can do that.’”

“I mean, funny stuff was happening,” he laughed. While Wonder was teaching Dylan how to sing like himself, Joel was joking around with Springsteen.

“Bruce and I, we knew each other,” he explained, “and when everybody’s singing together, sometimes Bruce and I are in the chorus and sometimes we’re not because there was a big pile of deli sandwiches on the other side of the room and we kept going over to get a beer and a sandwich.”

Despite their sandwich shenanigans, ‘We Are the World’ topped charts worldwide.

Joel recently returned with his first single in 17 years, ‘Turn The Lights Back On’. The New Yorker gave the track its live premiere at the recent edition of the Grammys in Los Angeles, where he closed the ceremony.

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