Depending on their political affiliations, people might be missing the presidency of Barack Obama for a number of reasons these days. Maybe the most underrated of those reasons were those ultra-cool Spotify playlists that showed up now and again bearing his seal of approval.
Well, he may be technically unemployed for the moment, but it doesn’t mean that he’s stopped caring about our listening pleasures. The website for The Obama Foundation dropped a brand new Spotify batch entitled Hometown: A Collaborative Playlist. Obama must be keeping somewhat busy, because he farmed out the curation duties for this newest playlist to some bold-faced names from the worlds of politics, music, television and more.
The theme for the playlist, according to the website, is songs that remind people of their hometown and inspire community service. For now, their hometown would have to be Chicago for that to actually be true, since all the chosen songs reference the Windy City in some way. The introduction to the playlist promises more songs to come in the future that will hit different spots throughout the country.
So what are some of the songs on this latest list? Like previous ones endorsed by Obama, it’s a pretty eclectic bunch. Aside from some obvious choices, like Chicago White Sox manager Rick Renteria’s no-duh pick of Sinatra’s “My Kind Of Town,” many of the picks stray off the well-worn path. Some are by Chicago artists, like The Staples Singers’ “Freedom Highway.” Other guest curators go for songs that remind of their time in the city, such as Ron Swanson himself, Nick Offerman, who offers up two choices from Tom Waits’ Mule Variations.
Even if some of the connections to the city might be tenuous, this is a soulful, uplifting pack of tracks, with Liz Phair, Curtis Mayfield & The Impressions, Kanye West represented. Now that his buddies have done him proud, the onus is on Barack Obama to step up and be our personal DJ once again, since there are no term limits on that job.