Earth, Wind & Fire Flower Again in Obama's America
White House concert helps revive popularity
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 23, 2009 2:29 PM CDT

(Newser) – Earth, Wind & Fire is back on top again in its 40th year, playing stadiums for the first time in a quarter-century. And their resurgent success, the band tells Newsweek, is based on a mixture of '60s idealism and the good favor of the president. Barack Obama has always been a huge fan, and he invited the funk pioneers to play at his first formal White House dinner in February. “What it did,” says member Verdine White, “it validated us in this era.”

But it’s not just a dinner invitation that makes Earth, Wind & Fire relevant again. White says the work his brother, founder Maurice, did “in putting together a band that would appeal to all types of people” is a particularly Obamaesque undertaking. “It's a '60s message that, at some times, people thought was kind of hokey. But through the lyric, giving people a sense of hope, the country caught up to us in a funny kind of way.”