Motor City music guest-stars at the Democratic convention

September 6, 2012

With President Obama's decision to bail out the Detroit auto industry a major talking point among convention speakers, it should come as no surprise that Democrats are also paying tribute to the music of the Motown record label from the 1960s and '70s, during the Motor City's heyday.

First lady Michelle Obama made her entrance Tuesday to Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered," while former Republican Florida governor Charlie Crist, who has endorsed Obama, entered the stage to "Get Ready" by the Temptations. Martha and the Vandellas and the Jackson Five also have gotten nods.

But the real Motor City star of the convention has been Aretha Franklin (she grew up in Detroit, but never signed to Motown). After all, the Queen of Soul -- and her hat -- performed "My Country Tis of Thee" at Obama's inauguration. House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) took the stage on Wednesday to the sound of Aretha Franklin's "Respect," and Franklin's music made another guest appearance about 8 p.m. Thursday during an extended break between speakers, when her hit "Think" boomed out over the P.A. system.

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Sean Sullivan · September 6, 2012