Mike Point/FilmMagic via rollingstone.com
An all-star lineup is schedule to perform at the swearing in ceremony of President-elect Joe Biden on Wednesday (January 20). Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez, Justin Timberlake and Jon Bon Jovi are just a few of the artists scheduled to appear. And, it was announced Monday that country music will have its moment on the stage as Garth Brooks performs.
Brooks made the announcement during a Zoom press conference Monday (January 18), saying:
“The message they’re pushing is unity, and that’s right down my alley, man,” Brooks said of the incoming leadership. “If we’re gonna get anywhere, we’re gonna get there together.”
Brooks received a direct invitation to perform from first lady-to-be Jill Biden. According to the AP, Brooks has known the Bidens for more than a decade, dating back to when Joe Biden served as Vice President to Barack Obama. While the “The Dance” singer has performed for every President since Jimmy Carter (except for Reagan), the last time he sang at an inaugural event was when Barack Obama was sworn in for the first time in 2009. He sang his poignant 1993 hit “We Shall Be Free.”
Garth told reporters that he won’t be singing that song this time around, but will be performing solo doing “broken down, bare-bones stuff” and that he had a few songs in mind to choose from.
Brooks shied away from being too political, focusing instead on his job as an entertainer and stated that his appearance at the event “is not a political statement” but a “statement of unity.”
“I’ve played for every president there is, since Carter, with the exception of Reagan,” Brooks said. “This is an honor for me to get to serve… and it’s one of the things that, if my family is around, no matter who the president-elect is, it’s an honor to be asked.”
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be sworn in Wednesday (January 20) at noon EST.
Hear everything Garth Brooks’ had to say about Wednesday’s performance in the video below.