I have a interesting take on that,” Jay-Z said Saturday at the annual “2 Kings” dinner, which was sponsored by Sprite and Bing and took place during NBA All-Star weekend. “I know everybody is gonna take this wrong: ‘We Are the World,’ I love it, and I understand the point and think it’s great. But I think ‘We Are the World’ is like [Michael Jackson’s] ‘Thriller’ to me. I don’t ever wanna see it touched. I’m a fan of music. I know the plight and everything that’s going on in Haiti. I applaud the efforts: [Millions have been raised] through text [donations] to Haiti. So I appreciate the efforts and everything, but ‘We are the World’ is [musically] untouchable like ‘Thriller’ is untouchable. Some things are just untouchable. It was a valiant effort, but for me, it’s gonna be untouchable.”
Continuing on, he says that a new song should have been written. Rather than remaking a classic.
“I would have loved that idea better,” he said. “As everyone knows, I have tremendous respect for Quincy Jones. Of course, I think he’s genius, as everyone else does. [But] I think it’s time for us to make a new [song]. I tried to do that with ‘Stranded,’ the song Jay, Rihanna and U2’s Bono and the Edge premiered at the ‘Hope for Haiti Now’ telethon]. I didn’t try to make ‘We Are the World,’ but I tried to make our take on how we felt.”