We still don’t know many details on next Wednesday’s inauguration (nor should we, given the current spate of domestic terrorism in our fair country) but we do know the soundtrack: On Thursday, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) released a 46-track playlist to commemorate the upcoming inauguration of the 46th president’s upcoming inauguration on January 20.
Now available on all major streaming services (with a specially sequenced version on Soundcloud), the genre-spanning playlist is a collaboration between the PIC, “Club Quarantine” creator DJ D-Nice and Issa Rae’s coyly named record label, Raedio.
“As a brand that is founded on the principle of being an audio-everywhere company, we are honored to create the official playlist for the historic inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris,” Raedio co-founder Benoni Tagoe said in a statement provided to Rolling Stone. “We know that music has the power to bring people together, and after a year of national challenges and division, we hope this collection serves as an indication of a new beginning, positive change, and a reminder that music of all types is a common language.”
In addition to celebrating next week’s highly anticipated change of administration, the playlist also revisits the triumphant (if unnecessarily delayed and contested) Election Night by including Biden and Harris’ walk-on songs (Bruce Springsteen’s “We Take Care of Our Own”and Mary J. Blige’s “Work That,” respectively), as well as those for First Lady Dr. Jill Biden and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff (Hall and Oates’ “You Make My Dreams” and the New Radicals’ “You Get What You Give”).
Other highlights include Kendrick Lamar’s “Now or Never,” feat. Mary J. Blige; Average White Band’s “Pick Up the Pieces”; MF Doom’s “Coffin Nails,” Salt-N-Pepa’s “Whatta Man,” feat. En Vogue; Bill Withers’ “Lovely Day”; the Staple Singers’ “We the People”; A Tribe Called Quest’s “Award Tour,” Marvin Gaye’s “Got to Give It Up – Pt. 1"; N.E.RD.’s “Run to the Sun”; Bob Marley & the Wailers’ “Could You Be Loved”; Kaytranada’s “What You Need,” feat. Charlotte Day Wilson; Sault’s “Free; the O’Jays’ “Got to Give the People What They Want”; SZA’s “Good Days” and more.
“During a tumultuous year that has kept so many loved ones apart, music has been a consistent vehicle that has kept us connected,” said Presidential Inauguration Committee CEO Tony Allen in a statement. “Whether you are a country soul, a jazz enthusiast, a hip-hop head, a classical sort, or just love that old-time rock & roll, music clarifies, inspires, unites, and heals...These songs and artists reflect the relentless spirit and rich diversity of America. They are the score to a new chapter and will help bring people together as the Biden-Harris Administration begins its important work to unite our country.”