Former President Barack Obama continued to expand his list of multimedia projects this week with the launch of a new podcast co-hosted by Bruce Springsteen.
Spotify released the first two episodes of “Renegades: Born in the USA,” on Monday, the title of which is a nod to Springsteen’s 1984 hit. The first season will feature eight episodes in total and feature the two discussing “their lives, their music, and their enduring love for America, despite all of its challenges.”
“On the surface, Bruce and I don’t have much in common,” Obama said in a video trailer, also released Monday. “In our own way, Bruce and I have taken side trips, looking for a way to connect our individual searches for meaning, for truth, and then for community, with the larger history of America.
“What we have discovered during these conversations is that we still share a core belief in the American ideal not as an act of nostalgia,” he continued, “but as a compass for the hard work ahead. ”
Watch the “Renegades: Born in the USA” trailer below.
Former President Donald Trump is not mentioned by name at any point in the first episode, although Obama briefly hints that his successor was “diametrically opposed to anything I believed in.” And according to the sound, the podcast will also feature live musical elements, with Springsteen taking a guitar for an impromptu rendition of “Twist and Shout” at one point in the trailer.
“Renegades” is the second project in a multi-year partnership between Spotify and Higher Ground Productions, the media company of Barack and Michelle Obama. It follows “The Michelle Obama Podcast,” which premiered in July 2020 and is hosted by the former first lady.
Obama and Springsteen have enjoyed a close relationship for over a decade. In 2016, the former president presented the 20-time Grammy-winner with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The podcast also comes weeks after news of Springsteen’s November 2020 arrest for drunk driving surfaced in the media. The reports came as a surprise to fans, given that the Grammy winner has been largely scandal-free for most of his nearly 50-year career.
While subsequent reports suggest Springsteen’s offense may not have been as serious as it was originally claimed, the revelation prompted Jeep to abandon a very heated advertising campaign starring the singer.
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