The White House Celebrates Motown Records

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obama group1 The White House Celebrates Motown Records

Rolling Stone: President Barack Obama, the First Family, John Mellencamp, Jennifer Hudson, Smokey Robinson, Natalie Cole and Joan Baez sing "Lift Every Voice and Sing" at the conclusion of "In Performance at the White House: A Celebration of Music from the Civil Rights Movement"

President Obama celebrated Motown Records with a special concert at The White House featuring Motown icons Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson.  Obama commended Motown for its role in the racial integration of popular music, calling it “the soundtrack of the civil right era.”

[photogallerylink id=39456 align=left]The White House concert opened with a Temptations medley featuring “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg” and “The Way You Do The Things You Do” performed by John Legend, Jamie Foxx, Seal, and Nick Jonas.  Legend then sang the hit by Marvin Gaye, “Heard It Through the Grapevine.”  An awesome rendition of The Supremes‘ “Stop! In the Name of Love” was next performed by Natasha Bedingfield, Jordin Sparks, and jazz singer Ledisi.

[photogallerylink id=39463 align=right]These funky Motown covers were a buildup to the moment when the two living Motown legends Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson performed.  Sheryl Crow and Smokey Robinson sang a duet on Smokey’s hit “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me.”  Stevie Wonder followed them up with “You Are the Sunshine of My Life,” and ended the evening on a high-note when he performed the soulful “Dancing in the Street.”

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