Posted May 21, 2008

Introducing Leah Kauffman

Bachelor of arts: journalism

Photo courtesy Leah Kauffman
Leah Kauffman

Hometown: Meadowbrook, Pa.

Where you may have seen and heard her: Kauffman was listed in Philadelphia magazine’s “Next: Philly’s People to Watch” issue in January for her song (and YouTube phenomenon) “I’ve Got a Crush on Obama.” She was also on MSN’s Most Influential Women of 2007 and was No. 66 on Blender magazine’s Hot List for 2007. You can find more of her political work at and her less-political music at She’s also just released her second independent album, Modern Monster.

Your work combines music and journalism. Where did you get the idea of doing that?: “The combination of pop music and socially relevant issues makes for innovative, entertaining content.”

What inspired you to write the song, and have you met Sen. Obama?: “I had read all of his books and thought that they were compelling. That was also around the same time that the topless photos of him on the beach came out. This was my way of endorsing him. But I haven’t met him yet.”

The video for “I’ve Got a Crush On Obama” got attention as much for the

young woman lip-syncing the song as it did for the music itself. Why aren’t you in the video?: “I’m pretty committed to being a singer and songwriter. Being in the video didn’t fit in with my goals.”

You’ve gotten a lot of media attention for your work. What has that been like?:
“The press has been fantastic. It’s been an overall enjoyable experience and I’ve met a lot of interesting people. I had the opportunity to hang out in the spin room after the Democratic debates at the National Constitution Center.”

What’s next?: “I plan to continue my career in both music and journalism through all of the interesting outlets new media has to offer.”