March 5, 2021

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Obama and Springsteen chat about feeling like ‘outsiders’ growing up in new joint podcast

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Spotify has launched a new podcast centered around chats between two good buddies: one a music legend and the other a former president.

Former President Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen on Monday launched a new podcast with Spotify called “Renegades: Born in the USA,” which Spotify described as a “personal, in-depth discussion between two friends exploring their pasts, their beliefs, and the country that they love.”

The first two episodes debuted on Monday, and in the first, titled “Outsiders: An Unlikely Friendship,” Obama and Springsteen discuss their upbringings and a joint feeling of being outsiders while they were growing up.

“When I heard your music, I caught that sense of emotional displacement, and it was a reminder that, in a lot of ways in America, we all have started off in some fashion as outsiders,” Obama tells Springsteen.

The two met during the former president’s 2008 presidential campaign, they explain on the show, and Obama recalls that they “grew to trust each other” over the course of numerous conversations and “were able to spend even more time together” after he left the White House. Springsteen, meanwhile, tells the former president that “I felt really at home around you.”

Obama and Springsteen also discuss race in the United States during both the first and second episodes of the show, with Springsteen observing during the first, “A big part of our history has been plunderous, and violent, and rigged against people of color.” The new Obama-Springsteen podcast comes after the former president and former first lady Michelle Obama signed a multiyear deal with Spotify in 2019. Both episodes are now available on Spotify, with six more set to be released in the coming weeks. Brendan Morrow

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