Manchin and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.V.) were recognized Wednesday at the Washington Court Hotel by the VH1 Save the Music Foundation, the National Association of Music Merchants, and the National Association for Music Education for their support of music education in their home state.
Singer-songwriter Vanessa Carlton, Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, and jazz guitarist and former New York Yankees player Bernie Williams joined in recognizing the political pair at the celebratory event.
Manchin says all that Guns N’ Roses blasting in his house may have paid off for his son, who was a talented singer in high school.
“He had a wonderful singing voice,” recalls the senator. “I used to come home from work, when he was a baby, [my wife, Gayle] would be holding him and she would be trying to hum him a song and he would hum back in perfect pitch and I would say, ‘Gayle please don’t ruin him.’”
A little lighthearted ribbing from a House member certainly didn’t ruin Bernie Williams’ time on Capitol Hill. The ex-baseball pro was greeted by boos from Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio), who apparently wasn’t a big Yankees fan.
Smith said of the congresswoman, “She’s a pretty heavy cat.”
He added, “She was very cool, very receptive to what we’re talking about and wanting to have music for every kid.”