President Obama shared an official campaign 2012 playlist on Spotify Thursday, Feb. 9, just days after singing a gilded Al Green song at the Apollo Theater in New York. Obama's turning out to be one of the more musically talented presidents we've seen in some time. Here's video of his crooning and the playlist in full:
Keep Marchin' - Raphael Saadiq Tonight's The Kind Of Night - Noah And The Whale We Take Care Of Our Own - Bruce Springsteen Keep Me In Mind - Zac Brown Band The Weight - Aretha Franklin Even Better Than The Real Thing - U2 The Best Thing About Me Is You - Ricky Martin Home - Dierks Bentley You Are The Best Thing - Ray LaMontagne Got To Get You Into My Life - (Live) - Earth Wind & Fire Experience Green Onions - Single/LP Version - Booker T. & The MG's I Got You - Wilco Keep On Pushing - Single Version - The Impressions Love You I Do - Performed by Jennifer Hudson;D... No Nostalgia - AgesandAges Stand Up - Sugarland Let's Stay Together - Al Green This - Darius Rucker We Used to Wait - Arcade Fire You've Got The Love - Florence + The Machine Your Smiling Face - James Taylor Roll With The Changes - REO Speedwagon Everyday America - Sugarland Learn To Live - Darius Rucker
As he passes on the playlist and hammers an actually halfway decent and relevant rendition of Al Green's Let's Stay Together, we're watching Obama harness the power of music and how it relates to reaching the masses. Obama uses viral media through the legitimacy of mainstream coverage to great effect, here. And it's done with taste and obvious knowledge, rather than the fumbling crux Romney chose to display. This is a pretty wise decision ethically as well, because he's basically insulating himself against legal movement on the campaign were he to use a song without artistic consent, as Newt Gingrich just botched with Survivor.
Here are five more presidential musical bests.
Ben Franklin Sure Ben Franklin wasn't president. But he was instrumental in the policy of many of the nation's first presidents. And yeah he had syphilis and all that; but he was also a decent inventor and innovator in the musical field. He created one of the most unique sounding and constructed instruments ever, the glass harmonica. Check one out in action below:
Bill Clinton If you can't remember when Bill Clinton started popping up in jazz jams all over television in the mid-'90s, you may have been the one who inhaled. He actually had quite a bit of reedy talent. He also had OK taste. Here he is ripping into 'Heartbreak Hotel':
John F. Kennedy This one's more about a musical event Kennedy inspired, rather than music he actually produced. I really just wanted a legit excuse to post the below video of the original Lana Del Rey. Marilyn had politics, y'all.
Condoleezza Rice If you weren't aware by now, Condoleezza Rice, the former Bush II cabinet member who has an oil tanker named after her, plays classical violin to apparently high regard. Here's a chamber performance featuring her skills:
Richard Nixon Tricky Dick played the accordion and the violin. He also once called drum and bugle corps one of the most American of activities. Anyway I couldn't find a video of any of that so here's when he met the hippies halfway and went on Laugh-In: