Obama Honors Led Zeppelin, Letterman, Hoffman

Don't trash the White House, he warns rock legends

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 3, 2012 1:09 AM CST | Updated Dec 3, 2012 2:45 AM CST

(Newser) – Led Zeppelin, David Letterman, and guitarist Buddy Guy were among an eclectic group of performers awarded Kennedy Center Honors last night. At a White House receptions before the awards gala, President Obama joked that the group had "no business being on the same stage together," the Los Angeles Times reports. "We’ve got Buddy Guy sitting next to Dustin Hoffman. We've got Dave Letterman alongside one of the greatest ballerinas of all time," Obama said. "I don't think Dave dances." Dustin Hoffman and ballerina Natalia Makarova also earned honors.

All three surviving members of Led Zeppelin were in attendance and Obama quipped that the rockers might treat the White House the way they did hotel rooms in their '70s heyday, Politico reports. "These guys also redefined the rock and roll lifestyle. We do not have video of this," the president said. "But there was some hotel rooms trashed and mayhem all around. So it's fitting that we’re doing this in a room with windows that are about three inches thick—and Secret Service all around. So, guys, just settle down. These paintings are valuable."

President Obama shakes hands with  Dustin Hoffman during a White House reception for Kennedy Center Honors recipients.
President Obama shakes hands with Dustin Hoffman during a White House reception for Kennedy Center Honors recipients.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
2012 Kennedy Center Honorees Led Zeppelin, from left, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, and Robert Plant on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012.
2012 Kennedy Center Honorees Led Zeppelin, from left, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, and Robert Plant on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012.   (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)
2012 Kennedy Center Honoree David Letterman, and his wife, Regina, on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012 at the State Department.
2012 Kennedy Center Honoree David Letterman, and his wife, Regina, on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012 at the State Department.   (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)
Kennedy Center Honoree Dustin Hoffman arrives with his wife, Lisa, at the Kennedy Center for the Preforming Arts on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012.
Kennedy Center Honoree Dustin Hoffman arrives with his wife, Lisa, at the Kennedy Center for the Preforming Arts on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012.   (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)
Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton join 2012 Kennedy Center Honorees John Paul Jones, Buddy Guy, Jimmy Page, Natalia Makarova, Robert Plant, Dustin Hoffman, and David Letterman on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.
Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton join 2012 Kennedy Center Honorees John Paul Jones, Buddy Guy, Jimmy Page, Natalia Makarova, Robert Plant, Dustin Hoffman, and David Letterman on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.   (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)
Hillary Rodham Clinton hugs 2012 Kennedy Center Honoree Natalia Makarova at the State Department Dinner for the Kennedy Center Honors gala Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.
Hillary Rodham Clinton hugs 2012 Kennedy Center Honoree Natalia Makarova at the State Department Dinner for the Kennedy Center Honors gala Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.   (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)
Meryl Streep uses her iPhone to get a photo of her and Hillary Rodham Clinton following the State Department Dinner for the Kennedy Center Honors gala Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.
Meryl Streep uses her iPhone to get a photo of her and Hillary Rodham Clinton following the State Department Dinner for the Kennedy Center Honors gala Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.   (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf)
Led Zeppelin, from left, keyboardist/bassist John Paul Jones, singer Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, stand as the Star Spangled Banner is played during the Kennedy Center Honors Gala last night.
Led Zeppelin, from left, keyboardist/bassist John Paul Jones, singer Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, stand as the Star Spangled Banner is played during the Kennedy Center Honors Gala last night.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
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