Barack Obama's 2023 playlist released as the former president takes a swing at being a tastemaker

 January 2, 2024

Former President Barack Obama has unveiled his annual playlist for 2023, featuring a diverse selection of artists who have made waves in the music industry throughout the year.

The 28-track list spans various genres and includes both well-established and emerging musicians, as The Washington Post reported.

This year's group of artists reflects global music trends, with artists who have achieved chart dominance and garnered Grammy nominations.

Some Noteworthy Artists

One notable inclusion is Colombian reggaeton and trap singer Karol G, whose song "TQG" featuring Shakira, from her album "Mañana Será Bonito," was among Spotify's top-streamed albums of the year.

American singer-songwriter Mitski makes her entry with the piano ballad "My Love Mine All Mine," marking her first appearance on the Billboard Hot 100.

Afrobeats sensations Davido and Burna Boy, both nominated for Grammys this year, also feature on the list, representing the genre's growing influence on a global scale.

Obama's playlist encompasses a range of musical styles, including Mexican singer Peso Pluma's trap-infused hit "Ella Baila Sola," a collaboration with Eslabon Armado.

The song, drawing inspiration from regional Mexican music, became one of the top-streamed tracks on Spotify.

While some slots are reserved for familiar names like Kendrick Lamar, Beyoncé, and Mitski, Obama introduces lesser-known artists to his playlist. Singer-songwriter Indigo De Souza, with her track "Younger & Dumber" from the album "All of This Will End," celebrates her first appearance on the list.

Alternative rock artist Blondshell makes a notable entry with "Joiner," expressing her excitement on Instagram.

Obama also showcases emerging talents in "Afrobeats," recognizing the genre's rising success. Nigerian-born Davido's "Unavailable," featuring South African producer Musa Keys, received a Grammy nomination in the Best African Music Performance category.

Noteworthy Omissions

However, some mainstream megastars like Taylor Swift and South Korean singer Jungkook did not make the cut this year.

Swift, recognized as the top artist by Billboard, Spotify, and Genius, had a record-breaking year with the Eras Tour, the highest-grossing tour of all time.

In summary, Obama's 2023 playlist serves as a snapshot of the diverse and influential musical landscape, featuring both established and emerging artists who have shaped the global music scene throughout the year.

Obama's annual list came out as the United States is once again facing a government shutdown, as well as assisting in the funding wars in both Western Europe and the Middle East. The former president has been vocal about continuing to support Democrat causes, and even appeared in a video with the current president to talk about healthcare just weeks ago.

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