Aretha Franklin Had No Interest in Trump’s Invitation to Play Inauguration

Barack Obama was considered by many to be a great President. The 44th President also had the ability to pull in some serious star power. Obama’s first inauguration was a star studded affair that featured performances by Beyonce, Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder and U2.

Photo by Chris Kleponis/Pool via CNP/Getty Images

Donald Trump hoped to best Obama when he held his first ever inauguration, but he might have fell a bit short. Trump’s inauguration featured performances by 3 Doors Down, Jackie Evancho and Big and Rich. According to a new book by reporters Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng, Trump asked Aretha Franklin to play only to be savagely rebuffed by the Queen of Soul.

Suebsaeng and Markay report, “In the days after election night, President- elect Trump ordered Tom Barrack, his longtime confidant who was chairing the Presidential Inaugural Committee, to reach out to the music icon or her people to see if she would sing at his inaugural concert.”

The authors continue, “Trump, who knew Franklin leaned liberal and had sung for Obama, had for years claimed the legendary soul artist was his dear ‘friend’ and desired it to be pitched to her as a chance to bridge the ideological chasm and to help heal the country following an emotional, unsparing general election.”

The singer, however, reportedly never got the chance to say no to his face. The authors write, “What Franklin never got the chance to tell Trump to his face is that around the time she had learned of Team Trump’s overtures, she privately stressed to friends that ‘no amount of money’ could make the singer, a committed Hillary Clinton supporter, perform at a Trump inauguration.”

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