"Hey You" is a charity song written and recorded by American singer Madonna. She co-produced the song with Pharrell Williams for the Live Earth campaign. It was released digitally on May 24, 2007 and was available on the CD and DVD of the Live Earth concerts on December 4, 2007. Musically it is a stripped-down, folksy ballad with straightforward, anthem-like lyrics talking about how to save the world from destruction. The song received generally mixed reviews, with one group of reviewers commenting that the modest message of the song was uninspiring while others called the song sweet and commended Madonna's commitment to charity.
"Hey You" was initially released as a free download for a period of seven days before being made available as a regular digital single. Once it had been released as a regular digital single, it entered the lower reaches of the sales charts of a few countries including the United Kingdom, Canada, Sweden and Switzerland. Madonna only performed the song once at the Live Earth concert, London, where she was joined by a choir of school children who provided backing vocals to her singing while the backdrops displayed images relevant to the song's message, like natural devastations, different cultures and political leaders.
"Hey You" was written by Madonna, who also co-produced it along with Pharrell Williams in honor of the 2007 Live Earth concert in London. It was inspired by the climate change campaign. It became Madonna's first released material to be written entirely by herself since "Gambler" (1985).Live Earth was a music event that brought together more than hundred headlining artists in a series of concerts, two billion people and launched a mass movement to combat climate crisis. The concerts took place in cities like New York, London, Sydney, Tokyo, Shanghai, Rio de Janeiro etc. It marked the beginning of a multi-year campaign led by The Alliance for Climate Protection to move individuals, corporations and governments to take action. The song was made available to be downloaded in MP3 and WMA formats on MSN's Live Earth website.Microsoft pledged to donate $0.25 per download to the "Alliance for Global Climate Change" society for the first million downloads of the track.Live Earth founder Kevin Wall said in a statement, "We are thrilled that Madonna donated her art to Live Earth and is a part of this movement for us."