B-sides: Smokey Robinson on Motown and the civil rights movement, John Legend talks tax cuts
On Thursday afternoon, hours before they would gather in East Room of the White House to celebrate Motown in song, R&B legend Smokey Robinson, label founder Berry Gordy and Motown acolyte John Legend took part in an education workshop held for more than 100 students from across the country.
Before chatting with the students, Robinson spoke with Click Track about how he prepares before speaking to young audiences.
Robinson: "My life is my preparation. I don't really prepare anything. I'm just open to whatever they want to know.. because my life has been my preparation for anything they could ask me. I started out at a time when the country was still... racially divided. Thank God there were people of all races that agreed with the civil rights movement. And people of all races died during that movement, fighting for civil rights. Thank God that those people have always existed. And thank God that it seems like the majority of country is of that mindset now."
After the workshop, Legend spoke with reporters near the front steps of the White House. When asked about the role of music in a recession, he had plenty to say.
Legend: "Everyone's worried about cutting costs, everyone's worried about balancing budgets and what always ends up on the cutting room floor first is the arts. And I think it's a shame, y'know. People fought to give me, a millionaire, a tax cut this year. I didn't need it and all the other millionaires didn't need it either. We're cutting a lot of things I think are really important to out culture right now. Not to mention, people are talking about cutting Planned Parenthood and all these other things. I'm really frustrated with some of the discourse that's coming out of Washington."
| February 25, 2011; 8:30 AM ET
Categories: B-sides | Tags: John Legend, Motown, Smokey Robinson
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