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Beyonce Knowles, Kelly Clarkson and James Taylor will perform at President Barack Obama’s inauguration as he officially begins his second term this month.

Obama was personally involved in selecting the performers.

“Their music is often at the heart of the American story and speaks to folks across the country,” said Obama, who won a second term in November.

Beyonce Premiere Pic

Cuban-American Richard Blanco will become the youngest ever inaugural poet at the quadrennial event, held in Washington D.C. on the 21st of January.


He will also be the first Hispanic or gay writer to take the role.

Obama said: “Richard’s writing will be wonderfully fitting for an inaugural that will celebrate the strength of the American people and our nation’s great diversity.”

For the music, Beyonce will sing the national anthem, Clarkson will perform “My Country Tis of Thee” and Taylor will give his rendition of “America the Beautiful.”

Taylor and Beyonce both sang at inaugural balls in 2009 after Obama was elected; her rendition of Etta James’ “At Last” has since become a staple of her live shows.

A vocal surrogate for Obama, she also wrote an open letter during the re-election campaign praising “the leader to take us from where we are to where we need to be.”

She and Jay-Z actively raised funds for Obama as well.