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Obama Celebrates Motown Records at the White House

Black History Month event featured performances by Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson, John Legend and others

February 25, 2011 10:10 AM ET
President Barack Obama speaks before artists perform at 'The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House' program on February 24, 2011 in Washington, DC.
President Barack Obama speaks before artists perform at 'The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House' program on February 24, 2011 in Washington, DC.
oger L. Wollenberg-Pool/Getty

The White House celebrated the music of Motown Records yesterday with a special concert featuring Motown legends Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson as well as contemporary stars such as Jamie Foxx, Sheryl Crow and Nick Jonas. President Obama held the event as part of an ongoing celebration of Black History Month. Obama referred to Motown's music as "the soundtrack of the civil rights era."

Photos: Barack Obama's Rock & Roll White House


The concert kicked off with a medley featuring "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" and "The Way You Do the Things You Do" performed by Foxx, Jonas, John Legend and Seal. Legend also performed Marvin Gaye's hit "Heard It Through the Grapevine," and Natasha Bedingfield, Jordin Sparks and jazz singer Ledisi teamed up for a rendition of the Supremes' "Stop! In the Name of Love."

Photos: U2, Bruce Springsteen Kick Off Barack Obama's Inaugural Celebration

Wonder and Robinson performed near the end of the program. Crow joined Robinson for a duet on his classic "You've Really Got a Hold On Me," and Wonder closed out the event with "You Are the Sunshine of My Life" and "Dancing in the Street."

White House jams to the Motown sound [MSNBC]

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