We’re now four days out from what will—barring, and we’re not crazy about typing this, but there it is, another armed insurrection in the U.S. capitol—the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States. (POTUS, if you’re nasty.) And you know what that means, folks: Playlist time!
That’s right: In a bid to restore some degree of normalcy—as defined by the tenure of Biden’s old pal Barack Obama, the U.S.’s first Spotify-conscious president—to the U.S. political process, the Biden Inaugural Committee has released a 46-song playlist full of songs that range from “Very easy to imagine Joe Biden listening to”—the inevitable Springsteen, dildo-named jazz rockers Steely Dan, Marlena Shaw—to “Would probably make Joe Biden pretty angry if he had to sit in a long car ride listening to them,” like Kendrick Lamar, Major Lazer, and the recently passed MF DOOM. (Represented, blandly enough, by an instrumental track, rather than any of his dense and intricate raps.) Which is not necessarily to criticize the playlist—it’s actually pretty good, as defined by the metric of trying to create a list of 46 songs that embody an Apple Music definition of “unity”—so much as it is to note the absurdity of “presidential podcasts” in the first place.
If nothing else, though, it’s nice to see 46 different artists who will not get immediately, righteously pissed off at having their images and art co-opted in service of the leader of the free world, a phenomenon that has been shockingly common during the tenure of the office’s current incumbent. Assembled by Raedio and D-Nice, the playlist ranged from Mac Miller and Dua Lipa, to A Tribe Called Quest and SIA, to what we can only assume was Biden’s one absolute, “Don’t fuck with me, I’m the President now, probably” demand, the inclusion of the Doobie Brothers’ “What A Fool Believes.”
Meanwhile, the preparation for musical acts for the inaugural celebration itself are also rolling along in a similar “Surely no one will be mad at Tom Hanks!” fashion, with the beloved actor set to host a star-heavy TV special celebrating the inauguration, which will also include appearances from Justin Timberlake, Demi Lovato, Jon Bon Jovi, and more