When Gal Gadot teamed up with a slew of celebrities for a viral cover of John Lennon’s “Imagine,” the public reaction was mixed. Some saw the video as a nice and uplifting moment during a difficult time for the world, while many others felt it was tone deaf.
So independent queer artist Leadr decided to try something similar, but this time with a different focus. On Tuesday, the singer posted his own version of the cover, made up entirely of other indie stars.
Playing similarly to the original Gadot video, with each artist taking a different line from the song, Leadr recruited fellow indie artists Zee Machine, Marqui Jordan, YVR, Desi Valentine, Jenna Kyle, Sean the Star Emperor, Yuugen , Derek Jameson, Lawrence Z. Williams, Justin Michael Williams, Chandler Juliet, Glass Battles, Krista Love Chakra and Jazmin Grace Grimaldi.
In a statement to Billboard, Leadr said that while he liked Gadot’s version, he wanted to make a video that could help artists directly affected by the current global crisis. “I liked Gal Gadot’s version of ‘Imagine’, but I also understand where the backlash is coming from,” he said. “While I think the celebrity version was well-intentioned, I thought it would be nice to see it recreated from the perspective of independent artists who have lost their livelihoods due to this crisis.”
The star added that he had seen how the independent community was held back in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak and encouraged fans to show their support where they could. “Between the loss of paid gigs and service sector jobs, the independent artist community is suffering,” he said. “I encourage viewers to support independent musicians during this time, whether that means buying merchandise, downloading their music, or something as simple as following them on social media. It all helps.
Check out John Lennon’s charming new rendition of “Imagine” and each of the independent artists involved below: