Will.i.am to Broadcast New Song on Mars via Curiosity Rover [UPDATED]

Tomorrow, for the first time in history, a song will be broadcast from Mars by none other than will.i.am. The Curiosity rover will be pumping out his new song, “Reach for the Stars,” a new composition about the artist’s passion for science, technology, and space exploration. At the same time will.i.am’s charity, i.am.angel, in partnership with Discovery Education, will announce a new program that brings NASA into K-12 classrooms. [UPDATED with a video from the event]


UPDATE: Video from the Martian broadcast (This one goes out to all the negative nancies in the comments)
NASA has posted a video created specifically for this event, with will.i.am talking about why he did it and how he prepared the song specially for this interplanetary mission. Not only is the song meaningful, but will.i.am’s words are well thought out and inspiring. He is obviously passionate about space exploration, science, technology, and securing the future of the world through STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) education. Check out the video below.

Reach for the Stars


Will.i.am gets a tour of JPL and checks out the full size model of Curiosity

The event will also be broadcast here on earth, and you can catch it live from JPL in Pasadena, California at NASA TV at 1 p.m. PDT (4 p.m. EDT) Tuesday, Aug. 28. Members of the Curiosity team will also be on hand to answer questions and explain to students the mission and the technology behind this interplanetary transmission.

Streaming video by Ustream


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The Martians may never forgive us.

Did anyone there hear Neil Armstrong died?
I am shocked there’s been no ackowledgment. But a song?
Here in UK media coverage also seems less than deserved by the first Moonwalker.
I hope am not first!

So … this talentless paperweight gets an article, but the passing of Armstrong doesn’t warrant a mention?


I don’t Will I am or his dumb hair cut. But I do like Neil Armstrong.

SO…the news is so slim that we have resorted to WILL I AM? Wow…

This is suck-i-tude.

@2 Armstrong’s passing has been all over the news here in the US. Treknews.net posted the news, just not here,although I did see it mentioned in a previous thread. I applaud Will.i.am’s support for NASA and promoting science education (thanks Kayla), but I think the passing of the most famous space pioneering icon could have gotten an acknowledgement here at this site first.

Armstrong aside, how can anyone bitch about a successful pop music performer promoting something we all love? How can that be a bad thing? I don’t listen to his music either but for fracks sake, his hearts in the right place!

We now know the moment when the Martians will declare war on us.

Yeah, I’m not a fan of Will.i.am or the Black Eyed Peas, but I think it’s great he’s doing this for NASA.

But an Armstrong dedication page would be nice.
And a Sally Ride page…
And a William Windom page…

@10 OMG yes! Sally Ride too!

William Windom of course goes without saying. Hello?

It’s funny, some call him talentless because you dont like the genre of music his group makes BUT if you actually knew anything about the guy you’d know that he’s a very talented and ambitious all-around musician (writing, producing and performing for not only his group effort but for many high profile solo artists). Just because you’re not on the same page as someone doesn’t mean they’re talentless, a hack, or whatever else you’d like to call them. Grow up. And on top of that, it’s good to see what he’s doing to build a bridge between NASA and school students.

All that said, I agree that there should be a news post here about Armstrong (which I’m SURE is on the way). While I get bummed out by the days here without any type of news, when you think about all that goes into having a solid website like this, I gotta hand it to Anthony and team for having any kind of patience with the gripes.

I’ve had a few conversations with folks here the lasy couple of years – even if we disagreed, it was fun. Always tried to defend the managers when content was slow, but come on now, Will.I.Am rates context, and Neil Armstong doesn’t? That’s just wrong….

Christ, I really need to proof read….

I’ve had a few conversations with folks here the last couple of years – even when we disagreed, it was fun. Always tried to defend the managers when content was slow, but come on now, Will.I.Am rates content, and Neil Armstong doesn’t? That’s just wrong….

Are they sure they can’t get the Shat Singing Rocketman for mars.

This is pretty cool. But who is gonna hear it?

Will.i.am actually a musical genius. You just wouldn’t be able to tell from his pop material. The simple reason is his entire popular music career has been one of deception. The way the story was told to me, he made a bet with a few friends about a decade ago that he could pump out the world’s worst music, and still get idiots to adore it. He purposely makes terrible songs, gets them played on the radio, in commercials, in superbowls, and everywhere else, and just watches and laughs while the masses eat it up. He doesn’t actually believe in any of the music he is making. It’s all a game to him. A big joke for his own entertainment. Kinda like Andy Kaufman.
If and when Will.i.am decides he is bored of his joke on popular culture, he will start producing music he actually believes in. And trust me, nobody is going to think he sucks when that happens.

Are you kidding me? The first piece of music to ever be played on the surface of Mars is WILL.I.AM?! Is our culture really that dead? He’s not even a good artist in his genre, let alone the fact that the genre is so totally not fitting for that kind of thing.

This will always be the first time. Forever. Hundreds of years from now, this will be part of our history. We seriously want that to be will.i.am?

The chances of anything coming from Mars, are a million to one they said…

Why? Why? Why? *cries*

Should have been shatner singing ‘Rocket Man’ if you ask me.

Im surprised there has been no mention of Neil Armstrongs death on this website. A huge significance to Mankind, science and Star Trek.


Of all the beautiful and timeless music on the planet Earth, Will.I.Am is the BEST we can do? Sad.I.am…. :-o

I’m half-kidding, of course.
If it’s a hook to get kids even just a little bit interested in space and the planets? Then I’m all for it. And at least I don’t have to listen to it…. ;-)

Does this mean the Martians will be wearing droopy drawers? Woulda done less harm to shoot them a book on Gangs of the 1930’s.

And yes, we absolutely should have articles on Neil Armstong and William Windom.


How about this, Sebastian?


I mean, sure, it’s not the subtlest way of saying hello to the red planet, but its power and influence is undeniable.

I think Will.I.Am is cool for doing this and besides that I dig his music. Now if they dropped Fergie off on Mars, we’d know if there are any male Martians right away. They would swarm that landing site in no time!

Could other artists start sending their music to Mars and quit bothering the Earth with it? Will.i.am is the least of our concerns on this point, but at least someone is setting an example.

Will.i.am?? Really??? What is this world coming to? I mean…er, what is our galaxy coming to?

WILL is a master of self publicity
he was tweeting whilst carrying the Olympic Torch and for him to sing a song on Mars is simply fantastic.
Well done to the guy.

Playing Will I Am brings to mind the scene in the Martian Chronicles where one of the astronauts thoughtlessly discard some trash. It seems that Man has arrived on the planet Mars.

As one of the 51% of Americans paying the taxes in this country, I’d like to know why the first music played on Mars isn’t the damn “Star Spangled Banner”. A little American pride is a little too much to expect out of Charles “NASA’s job is Muslim outreach” Bolden, I guess.

A lot of you sure do seem to have someone promoting science. You should actually take the time to look into what Will.i.am does for charity. The guy’s one of the few music artists out there I actually have respect for.

Well, this is delightfully useless.

Kinda cool, though. :D

#28 – Was getting the Curiosity Rover to Mars an all-American effort or did other nations help, even in some small capacity?

I guess one day someone will need to compose an anthem for the earth and all its inhabitants. Today could be a good day…


Will. I. Am has the misfortune of having poppe up as a story here, when the passing of Neil Armstrong is still fresh on everyones mind. The guy may be very talented and a wonderful man, but for him to rate a story while Mr. Armstrong does just boggles the mind. The moon landing was probably one of the most important events of the 20th century, and just doesn’t compare to…this.


Hmm what an interesting trek story. certainly worth the wait………
apparently a new film is coming out next year. not that you’d know it. Whoever is getting paid to promote the movie is certainly on to a winner. Paramount must be thrilled.

Don’t forget everyone. dallas is returning to tv soon. apparently one of the set construction crew lives next door to someone who used to make the coffee on the studio next to the desilu studios in 1966…apparently! Hot news non the less.

Yeah, I agree that its ridiculous that no Neil Armstrong memorial article was put up. Kayla clearly took the time and effort to put up a Will. I. Am one, but why not a Neil Armstrong thread as well? It couldn’t have been that hard? Or does TrekMovie.Com frown upon posting “negative” articles?

Sure, Anthony probably has an excuse, as I think he probably has something important to attend to, but c’mon, some of the other staff could have posted something. Or at least have the guts to explain why there’s no Neil Armstrong thread.

The only appropriate first music on Mars should’ve been Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds. Everybody know that.


Jeez, come ON, will you, article writers?
The guy wasn’t just the first man to walk on the moon, a legend all over the world, but he was a Trekkie too.
Don’t you think someone here should give that at least a passing mention on your front page?

It’s only because Charles Bolden is a goon that this even flies. How about prodcasting profound, One small step for Man, etc

28 – Right on…

I am glad Will I AM has some interests in this field, but Charles Bolden using the Rover to brodcast first himself and then a pop star reduces things to moronic levels. Deke Slayton or John Young would never do such idiotic pandering. Give Neil Armstrong his due or make it important, not an ego boost.

I dont get how this site warrants attention. The lack of proof reading of lousy spelling was bad enough. I dont get why Bob Orci checks in either. Just from a quality control point of view, why associate the franchise with this?

Seriously, a grassroots fan based trekmovie subreddit would be far more appropriate.

I need to stop looking at this site – its embarrassing.

This site has in the past provided us with articles covering when someone on the set of the new movie gets a paper cut, and the like, but no tribute article about Neil Armstrong’s passing…WTF?

#28 – Cannon – RE: NASA’s mission…you have it spot on…At least Mr. Armstrong is not here to witness this “touchy-feely” will.i.am bullsh*t…

And no article about William Windom’s passing…One of the best Star Trek characters ever, in one of the best episodes ever…Geez

A great interview with Neil Armstrong on the British Astronomy programme, “The Sky at Night” from 1970


Fantastic interview and all the better because it is relatively soon after the event.


Have to wonder what is up with Trekmovie not having a dedicated thread for this event, and also William Windom

Neil Armstrong, a personal hero of mine, is dead. His death has gotten fair coverage in the news, and I didn’t feel I needed to post it on TrekMovie. It is obvious that I was right, as you all already know about it.

Look, I couldn’t have done the story justice. Armstrong is a man too high on a pedestal for me to write about his passing.

Let’s have some respect for the dead and silently mourn his passing together rather than complaining that the free content provided to you over the past many years isn’t up to snuff.

FWIW I don’t get paid to do this. I am a full-time PhD student, and any article requires taking time out of my research to write. I’m sorry you are all so disappointed in my performance.

Hi Kayla,

I don’t think anyone is personally bashing you, certainly I am not. But I think a lot of people posting here are surprised that there was no thread which at least reported the sad event and thus giving us folks somewhere specifically relevant to post our thoughts…

Trekmovie does seem to have gone very quiet over recent weeks… But as we don’t pay for the content we receive, I do find it odd when some here get nastily vocal about it.

Is it wrong that I have no idea who Will.i.am is, but know all about Sam I Am?