Joe Biden’s Secretary of State nominee is a guitar-playing singer-songwriter who has jammed with Steely Dan’s Jeff “Skunk” Baxter

At 78, Joe Biden will be the oldest president ever to enter office when he is inaugurated on January 20, 2021. But even so, his administration knows a thing or two about how to rock.

Biden’s nominee for Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, for one, is a singer and guitarist who fronts his own band, Ablinken.

Back in 2018, Blinken, who served as Deputy Secretary of State under President Barack Obama, uploaded two songs, Patience and Lip Service (the latter has been characterized as a “weird mix of Alan Parsons and Blue Oyster Cult”), to Spotify. 

See more

He also wrote on Twitter, “For those who like wonk rock check out and follow ABlinken on Spotify. Some original songs from many years back but just recorded.”

What’s more, at a 2016 Coalition of the Willing government event Blinken, with left-handed Danelectro DC59 in hand, jammed Willie Dixon’s Hoochie Coochie Man alongside Steely Dan’s Jeff “Skunk” Baxter.

According to an article in France24, Blinken played jazz and discovered rock while growing up in Paris, and also quoted Pink Floyd's Another Brick in the Wall in his high school yearbook.

More recently, Blinken has performed in a Beatles cover band in Washington, DC and has also used his free time during the pandemic to compose his own songs.

As for what instrument he writes on? Perhaps it's the Martin D-28 that can be seen behind him in the below interview with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria.

See more

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Richard Bienstock

Rich is the co-author of the best-selling Nöthin' But a Good Time: The Uncensored History of the '80s Hard Rock Explosion. He is also a recording and performing musician, and a former editor of Guitar World magazine and executive editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine. He has authored several additional books, among them Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, the companion to the documentary of the same name.