“I’m living proof of whatever you’re born into, your tomorrow could be totally different…” – will.i.am
E! launches its new original series “Pop Innovators,” which celebrates the lives and work of those unique individuals who are amongst the most influential names in pop culture, with the inspiring story of seven-time Grammy Award-winning musician and creative innovator will.i.am. This revealing one-hour special is told in the star’s own words, along with those in will.i.am’s trust circle including Fergie,apl.de.ap, Taboo, Red Foo, Jimmy Iovine, and friends from the old neighborhood as they share their thoughts, stories and recollections about the man who continues to grow and change with the world around him. While music was the spring board for this tremendous talent, see how will has taken his forward-thinking attitude into technology, politics, education, space travel and more when the one-hour special “Pop Innovators: will.i.am” premieres Sunday, July 14th at 8:00pm ET/PT only on E!
Born William Adams, will.i.am grew up impoverished in Boyle Heights, a tough neighborhood in L.A.'s east side. Surrounded by gangs and crime, will.i.am found strength from his family (especially his mother and grandmother) and a positive outlet in music. His mother bussed him to an affluent white high school so he could have a better education and more opportunities. Childhood friend Red Foo (LMFAO) also attended the school with him and talks about will.i.am’s early fashion innovation that started there, born out of need.
From will.i.am's early group Atban Klan, which earned him his first $10,000 record contract, to his success with making “The Black Eyed Peas” into a world-wide phenomenon, will.i.am has been changing music for years. His desire for positive change in the world led him into wide-ranging areas including politics, where his influence was most obvious during Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential campaign. will.i.am also gives back to lower income communities with his “i.am angel foundation,” and is breaking new ground in education for not only the arts and design, but also science and technology. His desire to inspire kids to become involved in tech led him to team up with NASA and create a song that became the first to be beamed to earth from Mars.
“If I had to define the thing that drives me ... it would be dreams. Everybody has dreams. But my dreams come fourfold. Meaning, I have the dream, and then I have the dream to bring it real. And then I dream up all the things that are going to keep it from not making it real. And then, by doing that, that dream is sitting in front of me as reality.” will.i.am
Political activist, educator, musician, artist, fashion icon, technology fanatic and more, will.i.am continues to make a difference in the world, and is a true pop innovator. Don’t miss this revealing one-hour look at his life and successes when “Pop Innovators: will.i.am” premieres Sunday, July 14th at 8:00pm ET/PT.