Becoming, a documentary about former First Lady Michelle Obama, premieres on Netflix today (5/6). Directed by Nadia Hallgren, it's a companion to Obama's 2018 memoir of the same name, and includes scenes from the book tour supporting it; the trailer is below. If you watch the doc, listen for the score: it was composed by jazz great Kamasi Washington, and includes new material as well as previous songs.
"It was such a pleasure and honor to work on Becoming," Kamasi says. "Michelle Obama is such an amazing person and this film gives a very unique insight to who she is, how she thinks, and the way she navigates the world. It’s truly inspiring to see! Working with the film’s incredible director Nadia Hallgren to create a musical palette to support this amazing piece was truly a blessing. I’m so thankful to her for the opportunity to be a part of this. Barack and Michelle Obama’s time as President and First Lady had an impact on the history of this country and the world that is hard to put into words, but both Michelle Obama’s book and Nadia Hallgren’s film do an amazing job of it."
"Working with Kamasi Washington on the musical score for Becoming was a dream come true,” Hallgren says. "Not only is Kamasi a masterful musician, he also has a unique sensitivity that he pours into his music. His music reaches deeply into your soul. Mrs. Obama loves music, and when I read the line in her book ‘And heaven, as I envisioned it, had to be a place full of jazz,’ I knew immediately Kamasi was the artist that could interpret her experience musically. His sound is contemporary and timeless, a magical fit to her story."
The score will be released on streaming platforms on May 15 via Young Turk Recordings, and you can see the tracklisting below.
KAMASI WASHINGTON—BECOMING Tracklist
(MUSIC FROM THE NETFLIX ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY)
1. Shot Out Of A Cannon
3. Take In The Story
4. Southside V.1
6. The Rhythm Changes
7. Song For Frasier
10. Fashion Then and Now
13. Looking Forward
14. I Am Becoming
15. Southside V.2