Monday, April 11, 2005

W's iPod Playlist

Last summer, President Bush's twin daughters gave him a iPod for his birthday. Since then, the president has used it to listen to music while mountain biking. This morning, The New York Times reveals what tunes make up the presidential playlist.

The president, who is, after all, a busy man, does not . . . download his own songs. That task, according to the Times, falls on the shoulders of his personal aide, Blake Gottesman, who buys the music from Apple's online iTunes store. Additionally, the article reports that the president's mountain-biking buddy, Mark McKinnon, who was his chief media strategist during the 2004 campaign, has added his own "eclectic mix" of tunes for the presidential ears to hear.

Among the 250 songs (the unit can hold 9,750 more!) helping to raise the president's heart rate while cycling are country hits by George Jones, Alan Jackson and Kenny Chesney, and classic rock tunes by Van Morrison ("Brown Eyed Girl" is a favorite), Stevie Ray Vaughan (the late Texan bluesman's "The House is Rockin'") and John Fogerty. Ironically, Fogerty participated in the anti-Bush (can't really call it "pro-Kerry") "Vote for Change" series of concerts prior to last fall's election. The baseball-loving president, however, chose Fogerty's "Centerfield" instead of Fogerty and his Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son," which was used by the Democratic National Committee last fall in an ad designed to discredit the president.

McKinnon's "eclectic" contributions to the playlist include "Circle Back" by John Hiatt, "(You're So Square) Baby, I Don't Care" by Joni Mitchell, "My Sharona" by the Knack, "Castanets" by Alejandro Escovedo and "Alive 'n' Kickin'" by Kenny Loggins.

McKinnon told the Times, "No one should psychoanalyze the song selection. It's music to get over the next hill." But you know they will.

By the way, I'm still waiting for someone to give me an iPod. I don't ride a mountain-bike, but it would come in handy while dog-walking.

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