First soul, now blues. A month after enjoying his Al Green moment at a fundraising event, President Obama busted out the presidential pipes again on Tuesday (Feb. 21) and sang a few frames of “Sweet Home Chicago” during a blues explosion at the White House.
In what appears to be the final moments of a PBS special scheduled to air Feb. 27, Obama thanks the All-Star band (members include B.B. King, Booker T. Jones, Mick Jagger and Derek Trucks) for a great night of music, but receives a bit of peer pressure in return.
“We were trying to get you to sing that,” Buddy Guy is overheard saying. “Because I heard you had sung Al Green, so you started something so you gotta keep it up!”
Obama’s initial look of embarrassement quickly erodes and he proceeds to sing along to the raucous band, “Come on, baby don’t you wanna go… Come on, baby don’t you wanna go… (hands mic to B.B. King who sings “Back to that same old place”)… Sweet home, Chicago.”
With that, Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama exit stage left (is that Don Was in the hat?).
“Sweet Home Chicago,” a blues standard credited to the legendary Robert Johnson, has been covered by a large swath of the blues community, including Buddy Guy, Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Robert Cray, Junior Parker and of course The Blues Brothers.
According to PBS.org: “In Performance at the White House: Red, White and Blues” will honor the musical form that sprang from the Mississippi Delta and flourished in the Westside of Chicago with deep roots in Africa and slavery. The performances will explore those roots and pay homage to the great figures of the Blues and the songs they made famous… Airing on your local PBS station Monday February 27 at 9 p.m. ET.