Barack Obama
Credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Barack Obama has become an unexpected taste maker in recent years. Every December we look forward to his annual recommendations of film, books and music and just like the year of 2021, his newly-released round up is good chaotic.

“Over the next few days, I’ll share my annual list of favourite books, music, and movies. Art always sustains and nourishes the soul. But for me, music and storytelling felt especially urgent during this pandemic year—a way to connect even when we were cooped up,” the 44th President of the United States published to Instagram.

“Since these are works I have actually listened to, watched, or read, I’m sure I’ve missed some worthy stuff. So if you have your own recommendations to share, I’ll add them to the stack of books and movies I hope to catch up on over the holidays!”

The list comprises of 27 tracks that range from fan favourites including “Rumours” by Cardi B and Lizzo, “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” by Lil Nas X and “Volví” by Aventura and Bad Bunny to more indie and eclectic pieces. Think, “Gold Chains” from up-and-coming Australian artist Genesis Owusu while the playlist changes pace with a dance track, “Notice” by Tammy Lakkis.

Most fans seemed to be pretty impressed with his top inclusion of “The Only Heartbreaker” by Japanese-American singer-songwriter, Mitski. “OBAMA ROCKIN WITH MITSKI??,” one user commented.

“I’ve always enjoyed listening to a wide variety of music, so it’s no surprise that I listened to a little bit of everything this year,” he wrote. “I hope you find a new artist or song to add to your own playlist.”

You can listen to the full list on Spotify, below.

Alongside the 60-year-old’s music taste (which is top notch if you ask us), Obama also shared his recommendations across film and books in separate social media posts. “Next up are my favourite movies of the year,” he captioned the list. “Each of these films tells a powerful story, and I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.”

Among the list of 14 movies, he loved West Side Story, Judas and the Black Messiah and The Last Duel. 

As for books, Obama was reading historical fiction saga “Matrix” by Lauren Groff and the powerful memoir “Aftershocks” by Nadia Owusu. BRB, catching up on some much needed reading.