When blues legend Buddy Guy asks you to sing and Mick Jagger hands you a microphone, you sing. Even if you’re the President of the United States.
Barack Obama treated the East Room of the White House to a few lines of “Sweet Home Chicago” on Tuesday. The room had been transformed into an intimate club for the PBS special “In Performance at the White House.” Obama took the stage following performances by Mick Jagger, B.B. King and Jeff Beck to thank the “White House All-Stars.” Seizing the moment, Guy prodded the musically inclined Commander in Chief to join in on the final song of the night. Jesting, “I heard you singing Al Green. You done started something. You gotta keep it up.” Much to Michelle’s and the crowd’s delight, Obama obliged.
Music has become a major feature of the Obama camp in the build up to November elections. In January, a YouTube clip of the president singing Al Green went viral. After the “presidential treatment,” digital downloads of “Let’s Stay Together” jumped 490% in one week, according to Nielsen. This month, Team Obama released an official playlist on music streaming service Spotify. The 24 songs that made the cut spanned all musical genres, from Florence + the Machine to Earth, Wind and Fire.
Having a star-studding concert in your living room is one of the perks of being President, outweighing the not-so-good parts like a complete lack of privacy. “I guess things even out a little bit,” Obama joked.
Maybe, if we all ask really nicely, the President will go on a concert tour. It would sure make campaign season a lot more fun.