Spring Valley’s Darlene Love made a joyful noise at the White House on Tuesday.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer joined stars including Aretha Franklin, Shirley Caesar, Lyle Lovett, Emmylou Harris, and Michelle Williams for a gospel music celebration hosted by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. It was the latest concert in the “In Performance at the White House” series.
“Gospel songs are the songs of hope. Hope that we might rise above our failures and disappointments,” the president said in his opening remarks.
Love, who was a backup singer for legends including Elvis Presley, grew up singing in her father’s church. “Like Aretha and Sam Cooke, my father was a pastor,” she said during a pre-show workshop attended by students from across the country, including Somers. “My father actually got a lot of flak when I started singing secular music or, as they called it, ‘the devil’s music.’”
Watch the Rockland resident return to her gospel roots when the concert airs on PBS June 26 at 9 p.m.