Justin Timberlake and Steve Cropper

Justin Timberlake Brings Memphis Soul to White House

With his album still No. 1 in the country, Justin Timberlake brought his talents to the White House as part of a tribute to Memphis Soul. First Lady Michelle Obama invited 120 middle and high school students from across the country to participate in an interactive workshop entitled “Soulsville, USA: The History of Memphis Soul Student Workshop.”

The Memphis-born pop star joined an illustrious panel that included Sam Moore, Mavis Staples, Charlie Mussel, and Ben Harper for a conversation about the origins and history of Memphis Soul, and the hard work involved in being a successful artist.

J.T. reflected on singing in the church when he was a kid and how soul music influenced him. “With my latest record, I feel like I’m really getting an opportunity to feel youthful again in a different way,” he told the students.

He also performed Otis Redding’s “(Sittin’ On) the Dock of the Bay” with guitarist Steve Cropper as the First Family sang along.