Bob Dylan, the legendary singer-songwriter whose angry lyrics formed a soundtrack for the 1960s protest era, will headline a White House celebration next month of music from the Civil Rights movement.
Starring alongside Dylan, 68, will be singers Natalie Cole, Jennifer Hudson, John Legend and Smokey Robinson. Morgan Freeman and Queen Latifah will emcee the evening, which will include readings of famous civil rights speeches.
The concert, on Wednesday February 10, to be broadcast a day later on US public television, is the latest in a series of musical evenings hosted by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama.
Obama, who frequently says he owes his position as America’s first black president to the sacrifices of the Civil Rights generation, will make brief remarks at the concert.
Previous soirees have focused on Classical music, country music, Latin music and Jazz.
It will not be the first time that Dylan, who once raged “senators, congressmen, please heed the call,” in his protest anthem “The Times They Are A-Changin” has been feted by the White House establishment.
In 1997, president Bill Clinton made Dylan a Kennedy Center Honoree for his contribution to US culture.
In an East Room reception, Clinton thanked Dylan for “a lifetime of stirring the conscience of the nation.”