September 23rd, 2007
11:19 AM ET
14 years ago

Obama grooves to Stevie Wonder and Eminem

Obama said he also dances to the sounds of 'Earth, Wind and Fire' and Beyonce.

CRESTON, Iowa (CNN) - At a middle school in rural Iowa, Presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, took questions ranging from illegal immigration to Cuba. But it wasn't until the rope line that he was asked the real hardball of the day:

"Barack, what's your favorite song?" a dance teacher in the crowd yelled.

Signing autographs, Obama looked up.

"Oh, I got so many favorite songs," he said. "Do you want old school or new school?"

"I want your school," she replied.

After thinking it over for about another minute of signing souvenirs and posing for pictures, Obama came up with an answer.

"I tell you what. I can tell you the kinds of stuff that I love dancing to, and that is–I'm sort of of the generation of Stevie Wonder and 'Earth, Wind and Fire,'" he said to a cheer.

"I'm dating myself now," he continued.

"But I'm sort of hip to the younger stuff. You know, like Beyonce's 'Crazy in Love.' That's a good song to dance to. Eminem has a–although he curses sometimes."

-CNN Iowa Producer Chris Welch

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Iowa
soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. RuthieM

    All good choices! Obama will win the democratic primary. GO OBAMA! OBAMA'08!!!!!!

    September 23, 2007 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  2. Mimi

    That's the problem with this entire campaign. People ask questions that aren't important. Who cares about his musical tastes? Style over substance as usual.

    September 23, 2007 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  3. James Charlotte, NC

    Uh, no Kessinton, Obama didn't vote because that was a waste of time. You say he failed as a leader, but do you think the amount of taxpayer's money needed to vote on one issue could be better used to condemn a newspaper ad or something that can fix one of America's many problems?

    September 23, 2007 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  4. Mike, Cleveland, Ohio

    Kessington, Cleveland, Ohio

    I respectfully disagree with your statements. The resolution was a non-binding resolution which was created to put pressure on the Dem politicians to distance themselves from Keep in mind this resolution was proposed by a fairly conservative senator from Texas. Obama rightfully stayed on the sidelines for the vote because he didn't want to jump into a petty argument that has no bearing on the important issues that this country faces. Of course it was by no coincidence that by not voting with or against Hillary on the resolution he tried to avoid criticisms from both sides
    As for leaving the "movement in the cold," again even if he did vote, his vote alone wouldn't have changed to overall outcome. If this resolution was a true test of leadership, in your mind anyways, then I think your criteria for a leader are a bit out of whack. There are far more important things to do in the Senate than play political games with an ad in a newspaper. I believe Obama took the high road and stayed above the fray. If we spend more time trying not to divide people along political lines, the better off the political discourse in this country will be. It takes a smart leader like Obama to know when to fight and when to stay on the sidelines.

    Now, I've gone on record in these CNN blogs to condemn the ad in NY times, myself, not that it matters much. I've also have stated my vote will be going to Obama in the nomination process.

    September 23, 2007 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  5. Adrian Feldmann, Manchester, UK

    How can America win hearts and minds of one billion arabs and freedom-loving people everywhere, while it supports Israel in starving into capitulation hundreds of thousands of innocent suffering Palestinian families held in the Gaza concentration camp?
    Is this because Palestinians voted for the wrong party in what ex President Jimmy Carter called a "free and fair election" -albeit while under Israeli military occupation?
    Is it because they voted for freedom from Israeli tyranny and oppression, liberty and democracy?
    America supported and funded a military coup against the democratic choice of the democratic majority, Hamas, after demanding that the Palestinians go to the polls. Should America be dictating the regime in Palestine? Is an American Israeli funded Vichy-style occupation Government in Palestine superior to the free and democratic will of the Arab majority?
    Why is America scared of true democracy in Palestine?
    Should America demand that Israel comply with the 450 UN resolutions which Israel violates to procure peace in the middle east or not?

    September 23, 2007 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  6. James, Tucson, AZ

    Honestly, fluff pieces like this one do not serve the public interest. I care nothing for the contents of Senator Obama's I-pod.

    The man offers the most practical foreign policy proscriptions to America in the post-9/11 era and we discuss the racial significance of liking a Beyonce single? What?

    (As if people don't realize that no popular musician can achieve platinum status with an album without selling most records to White consumers.)

    Seriously, let's discuss the platform of the only Democratic presidential candidate with popular appeal, practical solutions and a record of opposition to the Iraq War from the beginning, not his music interests. Let's examine his appeal among independents and Republicans, not his interest in R&B and pop-rap.

    Some stuff matters more than others.

    September 23, 2007 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  7. trekks, kansas

    Kessington, you and I are fishing from the same boat. I would also be concerned about his particular inability to show some absolution (I know u dems hate that word) on issues such as this. However, of course, I would like to see him continue to remain there, as this will only help the republican party as we move closer to the election. Both he and Hillary are building fragile campaign platform, that will crumble like a year old cookie, should America or our allies come under another terrorist attack.

    We are facing the possiblty of military action against Iran. Weve heard democratics blast the Bush admins. for the current progress in Iraq. They say that he has "mislead" the American public into a war that has our forces stretched thin in Iraq, when we should be focusing on Pakistan and Syria (using Has Bin Laden as their martyr). This idealogy frightens those who have some understanding of what it would mean to take such action against a democratic ALLIED nation such as Pakistan. Put Syria aside for the fact that at the moment they pose realitivy the same threat to us as North Korea, in the sense that there are a multitude of other ways to deal with Syria that does not/will not require military action from the U.S. (if this were the only threat we faced on the Global theatre, yes Obama could possibly handle it). But people listen to your president, whether u like him or not, when he expresses to you the comcerns we face against the powers that be in IRAN. Dont listen to anyone who tells you we can live with a Nuclear Iran. That is so much more of an absurd and dangerous mind-set than we EVER faced in our complacency before 9/11, a date that Im only using for the sake of argument, as it was not the 1st attack from Islamic Fndmlts. The fact that the Democrats have so much trouble seeing that what little progress has been made in Iraq is actually somewhat of a miracle to accomplish in the Middle East in 6 years in a historical perspective, leads one to think that Obama and the democratic party might try to stay on the fence against military action that might be the only option when all others have failed. He can pound the soap box and talk big I agree, but is he the president we need in the face of such threats, in my opinion, NO WAY. And Hillary or John...GET REAL.

    September 23, 2007 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  8. Maria, Houston

    Obama never said anything demeaning about Clinton. Clinton camp is yelling foul every time anyone dares to question or differ with Hillary Clinton. Isn't that part of a democratic process to voice a different opinion? As for the Move-on congressional response – Obama did respond in a most sensible way and you need to research his comments before you make silly statements.

    Lavelle, you are absolutelly right – lets revisit the situation in Pakistan and talk about a GOOD JUDGEMENT.

    I am an Independent voter and my mind was open to see what all candidates are bringing to the table. Barack Obama is emerging like the most fit to lead this country,which is a pleasant surprise. His character and views are appealing and acceptable to majority of Americans. If he stays this course, he'll make one of those rare exceptonal Presidents who unite our country.That's the only way to accomplish real changes, domestic or in the world.

    September 23, 2007 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  9. pl. at the UN for a while.

    Sure, let us all run to the websites and read, in the candidate's abstensia, when and how s/he will do this and that. Nice, must be nice to hide behind a screen and never having to face the voters, and not having to give an answer on a splitsecond.

    Then, someone has suggested, let us review history, and if we do, we will unearth how it has always been the case that volition and planning, in politics never fail. Somehow wishes translate into reality.

    I beg to differ. And I will adduce in support of my view some flagrant samples of volition and positions that ended in disasters.
    – 750 BC; Solon, social scientist, put in wrinting the major modes of conduct that should be adopted as law in Hellenia. Utter failure. But the principle of looking at how people interact in the commercial arena and juristically adopt it as THE community standard in commercial relations inspired Adam Smith to present us with the gift? of capitalism. Mr Obama knows nothing of this. So I ask: what kind of jurist is he? He does not know how Smithsonian economics came about. Therefore, he cannot possibly know or understand Keynisian economics nor Miltonian economics. He fails on Economics.
    – 44 BC. Caesar goes back to Rome to crown himself as Emperor. The senators knew before he left Gallia about his intentions. Caesar had a clear "plan", the Senate made their own. Caesar never made it out alive from the senate chamber. All for nothing in the end. Thirty-five years later Augustus, without a plan succeded where Caesar had failed. Mr Obama does not know that crucial piece of history. He fails in history. Staying in the same topic, Mr Obama also fails in the the history of pragmatism. If it were different he would lock himself down to a web site.
    – The previous paragraph connects tightly to political history since pope Innocent IV right through Marx. So Mr Obama fails in political theory. I am willing to give him an opportunity to defend himself. Mr Obama, please tell us in the web site what political errors flow through Innocent IV, Thomas Aquinas, Machiavelli, Locke, Rousseau, the American Constitution, Marshall CJUSSC, and the civil rights legislation of President Johnson (1964-65).

    If you cannot answer this question personally, then you don't belong with the field of candidates.

    September 23, 2007 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  10. Simon, Concord, CA

    I love how people thought Laurinda was serious. Think about it! The "Temptations," Marvin "Gaye," Uncle "Cracker." Hilarious. Thanks Laurinda for giving me a giggle this morning.

    I am an Independent but have never considered voting for a Democrat for President. I would, however, vote for Obama. Hillary may have the establishment behind her, but the establishment would do well to read blogs like this and others around the Net that show the Democrats' best bet for the national election is Obama.

    September 23, 2007 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  11. laurinda,ny

    Isn'i it amusing how so many people actually think like Paris Hilton. I said correct me if I'm wrong, Hillary prefers yada, yada, yada. No I don't like Earth, Wind & Fire, Beyonce, Stevie Wonder or Uncle Kracker. If Obama said he liked Farmer in the Dell, some of you would say, oh thats a great song.

    September 23, 2007 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  12. donna, Seattle WA

    A pro-Obama site. Check it out.

    September 23, 2007 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  13. Linda - Albany, NY

    Perhaps CNN should change their name to ET. Explain to me how this is news?

    Honestly, who cares?

    September 23, 2007 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  14. Coach Haughton

    Hillary voted against the resolution and didn't mind what the GOP would say but Barack tried staying in the middle so that he would later tell us he didn't condemn but the truth is he left the movement in the cold on a day they would have aprreciated his vote. The man isn't man enough to show us where he stands. He failed in the true test of Leadership. He failed to lead on that issue.

    Posted By Kessington, Cleveland, Ohio : September 23, 2007 11:47 am

    Barack was the leader on this issue because he refused to be part of a political game. We dont pay senators 1-2 hundred grand a year to vote on ads in magazines. The vote was a stupid political stunt and I applaud all the senatorts who didn't vote. Hillary of course couldn't resist.

    Hillary failed to stand against the war. To anyone with a two digit IQ THAT is a true test of leadership.

    September 23, 2007 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  15. Tammy, Denton, Maryland

    Hillary's music preference depends on who's asking. It depends on her audience. She only likes Marvin Gaye and the Temptations when she's in front of black audiences.

    You haven't figured her out yet?

    September 23, 2007 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  16. Matt, Chico, CA

    who cares what he listens to?

    September 23, 2007 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  17. Tammy, Denton, Maryland


    The person who cares is the person who asked the question.

    September 23, 2007 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  18. Mr. X, Salt Laike City, UT

    Here's some news people should care about. This is the fight for the poor. I used to think I would vote for Obama, to help the poor, but I believe Ron Paul will do more to help the poor. The Federal Reserve is printing money based on thin air and causing the value of the dollar to plummet.

    Ron Paul wants to reduce over crowding in prisons by pardoning non violent drug offenders.

    September 23, 2007 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  19. Brianna Webb, McEwen, TN

    I also have a question for you Mr. Obama, what would you do if a sailor came to you with the audacity to belive in your vision, your help when there was no one else he could turn to? As you know this did happen and you turned him away. But Senator Clinton did not, she helped this lost Sailor find his way back to shore, which is more than I can say for you.

    September 23, 2007 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  20. Chima, York, PA

    Why wasn't this story about Obama's positions on Cuba and illegal immigration? I mean...that was what he took questions on. Why is CNN continuing to play this dumb game of making Obama look like he only deals with fluffy stuff and Hillary is the only one talking the important issues?

    This is getting absurd.

    September 23, 2007 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  21. Mark Billingsley

    What the hell are you talking about Brianna?

    September 24, 2007 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  22. trekks, etc.

    pl. at the UN for a while: I actually sat and tried to make heads or tales of that hopelessly wandering rhetoric, and I swear to you, Im the dumber for it. I am amzed I still have the capacity to type some sort response, as I am still staring at the screen in total bewilderment.Thanks.

    You can find this retrogresser posting his advocacy for Hillary on some of her tickers. If memory serves me correct at this point, I believe youve mentioned that you cannot vote, if that saves anyone, in the Obama party the the time of trying to figure out exactly what questions you wanted answered.

    September 24, 2007 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  23. JoeDuck

    well, weighing this against his stance on US diplomacy, health care, international poverty, and the Iraq War I just don't know who to vote for!?!

    September 24, 2007 02:32 am at 2:32 am |
  24. bukky, Baltimore, MD

    If Obama came in to make the practice of Politics better than Washington made it, then why is his campaign the major highway of Clintonophobia?

    Posted By Fred, Houston Texas : September 23, 2007 11:37 am

    Obama's Campaign is the LAST one running on clinton phobia. Ever single republican as attacked her like she was the anti-christ. And the Edwards camp as taken issue with EVERYTHING thing she has said. Mrs Edwards has become Viral in her attacks, but you blame it all on Obama?

    The ONLY time I've seen this guy attack Hillary is when she called him Naive at the debate. I like Hillary but he had a right to defend himself.

    September 24, 2007 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  25. bukky, Baltimore, MD

    his vote on the resolution. How come he stayed on the fence on that issue? This was very important and it takes a politician moulded in the form of Washington insiders to take to the sidelines on such an issue.

    Posted By Kessington, Cleveland, Ohio : September 23, 2007 11:47 am

    How in the H-E-L-L is the MoveOn vote an important issue? In what world do you live in. What Obama said was that it was a waste of time to vote on the issue. AND it was. What is the point of congressional act to condem a news paper ad. The fact that you think this is a important issue, make me worry more about the state of average american mind... Dumber and Dumber

    PLEASE people let the damn MoveOn thing go. It was an ad, a play on words.

    September 24, 2007 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
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