Gospel music artist Kirk Franklin has teamed up with Kelly Price, Fantasia, and Jonathan McReynolds to record a brand new version of Franklin's hit "I Smile." The performance was part of a COVID-19 relief effort called "Saving Our Selves," which broadcasts music and entertainment from around the globe and raises money for local charities in need.
"Saving Our Selves" was hosted by actors Anthony Anderson, Regina Hall, Kelly Rowland, of Destiny's Child and Terrence J.. Included in the lineup of performers for "SOS" following Franklin's introduction were: Alicia Keys, John Legend, Usher, Jermaine Dupri, Ella Mai, Jhene Aiko, Chloe X Halle, H.E.R., Ludacris, Swae Lee, and others.
"I Smile," a #1 Gospel hit by Franklin, was first released in 2011. Franklin wrote the song with James Harris III, Terry Lewis, and Fred Tackett. The song was written when Franklin was battling with depression, worry, anxiety, and fear. But he found a simple way to overcome it and that was to live a life of gratitude, he told his followers on social media.
"Things for you could be worse. I promise you it could be worse. And so, living a life of gratitude, then you will begin to be more selfless. Giving God thanks for what he has already done," the singer said.
"Wake up every day saying, 'I am a miracle I am not acknowledging.' Love you all, man. Have a strong year. Have a strong year. God has not forgotten you," Franklin concluded.