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Barack Obama shares his list of favorite books, music, and movies from being 'cooped up' in 2021

Check out the complete list of books, movies and songs that left a "lasting impression" on former US president Barack Obama in 2021.

December 27, 2021 / 09:54 AM IST
Former US president Barack Obama has been sharing lists of his pop culture favourites since he left office in 2017. ( Image credit: AFP)

Former US president Barack Obama has been sharing lists of his pop culture favourites since he left office in 2017. ( Image credit: AFP)





Ever since he left the office in 2017, it has become a personal tradition of sorts for former US president Barrack Obama to share his pop culture favourites at the end of the year. In a recent Instagram post, Obama released a list of his favorite books, movies and music for 2021.


Talking about his favorite reads, Obama wrote, "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."

Some of his favorite books include Lauren Groff's "Matrix", "Crossroads," by Jonathan Franzen, and Ann Patchett's "These Precious Days." Other literary favorites included Amor Towles' "The Lincoln Highway," as well as "Harlem Shuffle," by Colson Whitehead.

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Moving on to his list of favourite movies, the former president shared that Questlove's acclaimed documentary "Summer of Soul," Steven Spielberg's latest "West Side Story" and the upcoming movie "The Tragedy of Macbeth," starring Oscar-winning actors Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand, made it to the top slots on his list.

To end the week of presidential favorites, Obama shared music from artists such as Lizzo, Lil Nas X, Mitski and Yebba that kept him grooving as he "listened to a little bit of everything this year."

Check out the complete list of books that left a "lasting impression" on Obama in 2021:

  1. "Matrix" by Lauren Groff

  2. "How the Word Is Passed" by Clint Smith

  3. "The Final Revival of Opal & Nev" by Dawnie Walton

  4. "The Lincoln Highway" by Amor Towles

  5. "Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival & Hope in an American City" by Andrea Elliott

  6. "Harlem Shuffle" by Colson Whitehead

  7. "Cloud Cuckoo Land" by Anthony Doerr

  8. "These Precious Days" by Ann Patchett

  9. "Crying in H Mart" by Michelle Zauner

  10. "Aftershocks" by Nadia Owusu

  11. "Crossroads" by Jonathan Franzen

  12. "The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois" by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers

  13. "Beautiful Country" by Qian Julie Wang

  14. "At Night All Blood is Black" by David Diop

  15. "Land of Big Numbers" by Te-Ping Chen

  16. "Empire of Pain" by Patrick Radden Keefe

  17. "Project Hail Mary" by Andy Weir

  18. "When We Cease to Understand the World" by Benjamín Labatut

  19. "Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future" by Elizabeth Kolbert

  20. "Things We Lost to the Water" by Eric Nguyen

  21. "Leave the World Behind" by Rumaan Alam

  22. "Klara and the Sun" by Kazuo Ishiguro

  23. "The Sweetness of Water" by Nathan Harris

  24. "Intimacies" by Katie Kitur


"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!" Obama wrote on Instagram.

Read more: Asked to imagine a day of anonymity, Obama talks of grocery shopping, ice-cream

Obama's favorite movies of 2021

  1. Drive My Car

  2. Summer of SoulWest Side Story

  3. The Power of the Dog

  4. Pig

  5. Passing

  6. The Card Counter

  7. Judas and the Black Messiah

  8. The Worst Person in the World

  9. Old Henry

  10. The Last Duel

  11. The Tragedy of Macbeth

  12. C'mon C'mon

  13. Quo Vadis, Aida?


Read more: UP lawyer files civil suit against Barack Obama's A Promised Land for 'insulting' Manmohan Singh, Rahul Gandhi

Obama's favorite songs of 2021

  1. "The Only Heartbreaker" by Mitksi

  2. "I Don't Live Here Anymore" by The War On Drugs featuring Lucius

  3. "Tala Tannam" by Mdou Moctar

  4. "Magnolia Blues" by Adia Victoria

  5. "Witchoo" by Durand Jones, The Indications and Aaron Frazer

  6. "Formwela 10" by Esperanza Spalding

  7. "Gold Chains" by Genesis Owusu

  8. "Broken Horses" by Brandi Carlile

  9. "Woman" by Little Simz featuring Cleo Sol

  10. "Farruko" by Pepas

  11. "Go Down Deh" by Spice featuring Sean Paul and Shaggy

  12. "Freedom" by Jon Batiste

  13. "It's Way With Me" by Wye Oak

  14. "Nobody" by Nas featuring Lauryn Hill

  15. "Nightflyer" by Allison Russell

  16. "Montero (Call Me By Your Name)" by Lil Nas X

  17. "Patria Y Vida" by Yotuel, Gente de Zona, Descemer Bueno, Maykel Osorbo, el Funky

  18. "Notice" by Tammy Lakkis

  19. "Armash" by Teddy Afro

  20. "Write A List of Things To Look Forward To" by Courtney Barnett

  21. "Volví" by Aventura and Bad Bunny

  22. "Headshots (4R Da Locals)" by Isaiah Rashad

  23. "Boomerang" by Yebba

  24. "In My Blood" by MO3 and Morray

  25. "Ya" by YENDRY

  26. "Rumors" by Lizzo featuring Cardi B

  27. "Walking At A Downtown Pace" by Parquet Courts
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first published: Dec 27, 2021 09:11 am
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