Obama came out with his book and his music lists for the summer. See his picks here.
“Each year I’m excited to share my summer playlist because I learn about so many new artists from your responses – it’s an example of how music can truly bring us together,” Obama tweeted this week.
The selections span generations, genres and even continents. Some artists and authors on the lists also have local college connections, including singer-songwriter Maggie Rogers, a recent Harvard Divinity School graduate, and author Hanya Yanagihara, who attended Smith College.
Rogers, who was in high rotation in the playlist shared by Michelle Obama and her husband in 2019, with his song “Burning”, reacted again when seeing that his new track, “That’s Where I Am”, made the cut this year.
Country artist Maren Morris, whose song ‘The Furthest Thing’ was selected, also expressed her excitement at being featured, tweeting a series of exclamation marks.
Yascha Mounk, a writer who earned his doctorate from Harvard University, responded to Obama’s current reading list by thanking him for the “great honor” of including his book, “The Great Experiment.”
“‘The Great Experiment’ was deeply inspired by your political vision – by your ability to name the evil in the world while insisting that our actions can make it a better place”, Moun tweeted. “I am deeply honored that this book spoke to you.”
Other artists included familiar favorites like Beyoncé and her song “Break My Soul,” and Drake and Rihanna’s track “Too Good” — a bop he apparently hasn’t been able to get enough of for a few summers now. Bruce Springsteen, who has both a podcast and a book with the former president, also made this year’s playlist with “Dancing in the Dark.”
Classics like “Blue in Green” by Miles Davis and “I Can’t Get Next to You” by Al Green were also selected.
Obama’s list of books offered an equally diverse range.
“Read some great books this year and wanted to share some of my favorites so far. What have you read this summer? he tweeted.
Her picks this year include novels like Emily St. John Mandel’s “Sea of Tranquility”; “Blood in the Garden: The Flagrant History of the 1990s New York Knicks” by Chris Herring (a title Obama chose specifically for “hoops fans”); and “Why We’re Polarized,” a non-fiction selection from New York Times reporter Ezra Klein.
Take a look at what Obama has imagined for this summer:
Every year I’m excited to share my summer playlist because I get to know so many new artists from your responses. It’s an example of how music can really bring us together.
Here’s what I listened to this summer. What songs would you add? pic.twitter.com/9OgPq0SRy4
—Barack Obama (@BarackObama) July 26, 2022
Shannon Larson can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @shannonlarson98.