June 23, 2024

Brad Paisley and the Howard Gospel Choir will perform at the State Dinner, highlighting the relationship between the United States and Kenya.

Brad Paisley and Howard Gospel Choir provide entertainment at the state dinner focusing on U.S.-Kenya relations

The first lady’s office said the decision to invite Brad Paisley and the Howard Gospel Choir to the state dinner was a tribute to the guests’ love of country and gospel music.

“The First Lady has selected celebrated composer and singer Brad Paisley and the esteemed Howard Gospel Choir to perform at the State Dinner,” the First Lady’s office told CNN.

“Brad Paisley and the Howard Gospel Choir were selected by Dr. Biden to honor President and Mrs. Ruto’s love of country and gospel music and celebrate the enduring bond between the United States and Kenya,” the announcement added.

A state visit is one of the most powerful diplomatic moves the White House can use to honor an important ally. This lavishly organized event aims to communicate and highlight the cultures of the two countries, as Biden wants to emphasize the strong relationship between the two countries.

This is the first time that an American president has hosted an African leader at an official banquet since President George W. Bush hosted the President of Ghana in February 2008.

As for Biden, who promised to visit the African continent “soon” in 2022, he has not yet fulfilled this commitment. However, he stressed the importance of cooperation with Africa, and is keen to build relationships with a number of leaders to counter the advances of Russia and China on the continent. Jill Biden traveled to Namibia and Kenya in February 2023.

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Grammy Award-winner Paisley previously hosted a governor’s dinner at the White House and accompanied Jill Biden on a visit to a COVID-19 vaccination site in Nashville in June 2021.

Paisley has performed at the White House before, in 2009 during the Obama administration as part of a music series. He talked about how he sang the song “Welcome to the Future” for then-President Barack Obama. The final verse was about a high school teen who got in trouble because he was black and burned a cross in his yard to ask for favors from the prom queen. The phrase “Wake up Martin Luther, welcome to the future” refers to civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr.

He described this moment as “one of the most artistic experiences I have ever had” as he was able to deliver this message to someone who helped usher in the new era.

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source: edition.cnn.com