But Questlove said he’s been working on the playlist for much longer than the book has been in the works, back when iPods were still considered cool.
As a volunteer for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, “I became so obsessed with curating the ultimate President Obama playlist that it actually consumed me,” he told People. “I could never get past the letter ‘C.’ I was that meticulous.”
However, the musician, who attended White House correspondents' dinners and served as the DJ for several parties the former first couple held throughout the Obama administration, learned what music they liked as he became a frequent presence at their events.
Now, 10 years later, he has a use for his project.
“It was such a task, but I’m glad to have gotten these songs over to her,” Questlove told People.
It appears that it was worth the time and energy — Michelle Obama commended Questlove’s efforts in a statement to Billboard.
“I’m so thankful to Questlove for curating these playlists and infusing them with his signature style,” she said. “Life’s a little better when we live it to Questlove’s beat.”
You can listen to the epic playlist, which features artists such as Aretha Franklin, Michael Jackson, Kendrick Lamar and Michelle Obama’s gal pal Beyoncé, on streaming services Pandora and Spotify.
And Questlove didn’t just pull together a ton of songs: He also has listening instructions for enjoying them. According to Billboard, to enjoy the experience as Questlove intended, you should listen to the first two volumes in order, starting with a song from the year of Michelle Obama’s birth: Sam Cooke’s 1964 hit “(Ain’t That) Good News.” By the time you reach the third installment, feel free to shuffle.