Hamilton remix stars Barack Obama as George Washington

By Tom Gerken
BBC News

  • Published
Four men stand around a piano. One of them is former US President Barack ObamaImage source, Lin-Manuel Miranda
Image caption,
Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda shared this picture of Barack Obama practising the number with Chris Jackson and musical director Alex Lacamoire

Former US President Barack Obama has lent his voice to a new version of a song from the hit musical Hamilton.

The show's creator Lin-Manuel Miranda has released monthly remixes of songs - or "Hamildrops" - since December 2017.

In what has been labelled "the final Hamildrop", Mr Obama performs George Washington's farewell address from second act number One Last Time.

He is accompanied by Chris Jackson, who starred as Washington in the original Broadway cast.

Six-time Grammy Award winner BeBe Winans also features on the track.

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Hamilton tells the story of US founding father Alexander Hamilton, and features other historical figures including Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr.

The song One Last Time is Washington's farewell number, in which he tells Hamilton that together they will teach Americans "how to say goodbye" to a president.

The remix may be informed by a moment near the end of Mr Obama's presidency, when Miranda and Jackson performed the song at the White House.

The emotional performance drew tears from back-up singers and members of Mr Obama's former cabinet, and ended with an embrace between Miranda and the former president.

At the time, Mr Obama called the show "an incredible gift... it is rare that a piece of art can remind us about what's best in ourselves".

Referring to the end of his presidency, he added: "With that, let me know how to say goodbye."

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Other Hamildrops have included a song about Benjamin Franklin performed by The Decemberists, a posthumous release by Prodigy and a new original song for the musical by Miranda and composer John Kander.

But perhaps the most unlikely was a polka megamix condensing the musical into five minutes by parody artist Weird Al Yankovic.

This came after a collection of remixed tunes from the musical was released as The Hamilton Mixtape in 2016, which included performances from Sia, Usher and Chance the Rapper.

And British audiences may recall a brief, unofficial cover of You'll Be Back by Prince Harry in August 2018.

Media caption,

Prince Harry briefly "auditioned" for Hamilton earlier this year with an impression of his sixth great-grandfather

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