The Foreign Minister took the stage to launch a diplomatic initiative
The US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinkensurprised at an official event by going on stage to not only give a speech, but also put on a musical show and show off his guitar skills with a classic blues song.
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The 61-year-old diplomat, who describes himself as a “(very) amateur guitarist,” demonstrated his skills by playing guitar and singing “Hoochie Coochie Man” by Muddy Waters.
Flashing his rockstar side, Blinken joked before his appearance: “If this doesn’t clear the room, I don’t know what will.” He later shared the video on his social media and said: “I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to combine music and diplomacy“.
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The images quickly went viral and received several positive comments. “OMG… it was amazing!” exclaimed one user, echoing the sentiments of many. Others praised Blinken’s hidden talent, saying in one comment: “Wow, I had no idea! Very nice,” and another said, “I loved seeing your hidden talents. @SecBlinken you did great.”
Blinken sang “Hoochie Coochie Man” by Muddy Waters
Blinken, who has held the position of 71st Secretary of State since January 2021, There are even three songs available on Spotify under his pseudonym Ablinkenthat show a lesser-known side of his multi-faceted personality.
The unexpected show took place as part of the launch of the initiative.Global music diplomacy“, which aims to position music as an effective tool for promoting peace and democracy, as well as supporting broader foreign policy goals.
Numerous artists performed live at the star-studded event, including Jamie Barton, GAYLE, Dave Grohl, Mickey Guyton and Herbie Hancock, among others. Quincy Jones received the first Peace Through Music Award for its important role in intercultural exchange and promoting peace through music.
The launch of the Global Music Diplomacy initiative led to three major announcements: a partnership with the Recording Academy for the American Music Mentoring Program, efforts to promote a curriculum for learning English abroad, and the Fulbright-Kennedy Center Visiting Scholar in Arts and Sciences.
Thinking about the initiative, Blinken emphasized music’s potential to connect cultures and tell America’s story around the world. By launching this initiative, we hope to introduce a new generation of global audiences to what previous generations found so attractive: our people and our culture. “We have no more powerful tools in our diplomatic toolbox, and I look forward to seeing – and hearing – the results of this initiative.”
The development of the Global Music Diplomacy initiative follows the Promotion of Peace, Education and Cultural Exchange (PEACE) through Music Diplomacy Act of 2022, which signals a unique approach to international relations that balances diplomacy and music.
The State Department has long launched music-based diplomatic initiatives, from President Roosevelt’s founding of the Office of Inter-American Affairs (OIAA) in 1940 to Bruce Springsteen’s performance before 300,000 fans in East Berlin in 1988, the year before the fall of the Wall to 2010’s “Next Level,” an attempt to build a global community through hip-hop.
(With information from AP)