President Barack Obama gave what appeared to be an impromptu performance of “Sweet Home Chicago” during a blues concert Tuesday night at the White House in celebration of Black History Month.
At the end of an evening of performances from the likes of B.B. King, Mick Jagger, Jeff Beck, Derek Trucks, Shemekia Copeland and others, Obama grabbed a mic from the stage and crooned, “Come on, baby don’t you wanna go,” part of the popular blues standard.
A month ago, Obama sang a little Al Green — a moment captured on video and viewed thousands of times over. It was seen as having added cool points to the president. Afterwards First Lady Michelle said Obama sings to her all the time.
Whether Tuesday’s performance was really impromptu, or staged as another way to help the president’s image during an election year, we may never know. One thing we do know is that Republican candidates like Mitt Romney have not had the same success in musical performance.
Obama called the blues “music with humble beginnings,” with roots in slavery and segregation in the United States.