This is historical material “frozen in time”. The website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work.

Search form

Watch Live: The Motown Sound - In Performance at the White House

The White House celebrates Black History Month with a tribute to Motown’s legacy. Watch performances by Jamie Foxx, Smokey Robinson, Sheryl Crow, Seal and more along with a student workshop live on

Tonight, the White House will celebrate Black History Month with a tribute to the legendary Motown Sound. Hosted by the President and First Lady, the program pays tribute to Motown’s fifty year legacy and its distinctive soul-infused pop music sound that solidified its popularity in American culture and influenced American music. You're invited to watch live on

This is the eighth in a series of evenings celebrating the music that tells the story of America. Since 2009, the President and First Lady have hosted musical tributes to genres including Jazz, Country, Classical, Latin, Music of the Civil Rights Movement and Broadway. 

The all-star tribute will include stars from the Motown Records label’s golden age and performances by artists of today who have been influenced by Motown and its powerful legacy. Performers include Smokey Robinson, Natasha Bedingfield, Sheryl Crow, Jamie Foxx, Gloriana, Nick Jonas, Ledisi, John Legend, Amber Riley, Mark Salling, Seal and Jordin Sparks with Greg Phillinganes as the night’s music director. Watch "The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House" Live at 7:15 p.m. EST.

This afternoon, the First Lady will host high school students from around the country for an educational workshop on the history of Motown. Taught by GRAMMY Museum Executive Director Robert Santelli, “The Sound of Young America” will give students an overview of the history of Motown music and outline the importance the genre had in the integration of African-American artists onto the pop charts. Introduced by the First Lady and moderated by Santelli, the program will also feature Motown founder Berry Gordy and musical legend Smokey Robinson. Watch "The Sound of Young America: The History of Motown" live at 1:30 p.m. EST.