Singer Al Green Turns Down Invite to Sing at Obama’s Second Inaugural

-By Warner Todd Huston

At a 2012 campaign fundraiser, President Barack Obama sang a line of Al Green’s hit “Let’s Stay Together” as the singer watched from the audience. Green, however, turned down an invite to attend and perform at the President’s second inauguration.

Green’s reps told the Associated Press that he had to turn down the President’s invitation to sing at this year’s event because of a scheduling conflict.

In 2012, while on stage at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, Obama sang a line of Green’s song but quickly deferred to the singer, who was in the audience.

“Don’t worry Rev., I can not sing like you,” the President said. “I just wanted to show my appreciation.”

In an interview after the 2009 event, Green said he was thrilled by Obama’s attention.

“I was thrilled that the President even mentioned my name and if the President can get the economy going again and get everything going that he wants to, then we’ll all be together.”

Through his reps, Green said he’d be “honored” to perform for the President at some other time.

“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s,, and, as well as,,,,, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

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