Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Barack and Michelle Obama Not Renewing Podcast Contract with Spotify

*Barack and Michelle Obama’s podcast contract with Spotify Technology SA is coming to an end in October, and they will not renew it. Bloomberg reports that Higher Ground, the Obamas’ production company, failed to strike an agreement with Spotify. The former First couple wanted the popular streaming service to expand coverage so that the show could reach a larger audience, but it seems Spotify is not willing to do that.

Higher Ground signed a three-year deal with Spotify in 2019 but the terms of the agreement made it hard for the project to reach a wider audience. This didn’t go down well with the Obamas. For that reason, there will be no renewal of the contract. Already, their media company is reported to be in talks with other alternatives such as Amazon’s Audible and iHeartMedia, among others.

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Michelle & Barack Obama - Getty
Michelle & Barack Obama – Getty

Spotify has produced very many podcasts from Higher Ground ever since the deal started. These include: “Renegades: Born in the USA,” “The Big Hit Show,” “The Michelle Obama Podcast,” and “I Am.”

“Renegades: Born in the USA” was a series of discussions between Bruce Springsteen and former President Obama. Bloomberg reports that those shows will continue to air on the digital streaming platform through the fall.

Barack Obama - Bruce Springsteen (Getty)
Barack Obama – Bruce Springsteen (Getty)

Higher Ground was founded in 2018, and since then it has created both scripted and unscripted television and film projects. Some of their documentaries, such as “Becoming,” “Crip Camp,” and “American Factory” received widespread positive feedback. “American Factory” even won an Oscar for Best Documentary Feature at the 92nd Academy Awards.

Since Higher Ground and Spotify were partners on the podcasts, the Obamas’ next deal will require new programming.

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