Trump inauguration: Which artists will and won't perform

Donald Trump will be sworn in as America's 45th President on Friday, but finding the right soundtrack has not been easy.

For a man who used to take pride in mingling with the A-listers, Mr Trump has found himself unprecedentedly short of support when it comes to pumping up the party.

At his predecessor's inauguration ball back in 2009, We Are One brought together Jay Z, Steve Wonder and Beyonce - among others.

Mr Trump, on the other hand, will have to make do with less famous names such as The Piano Guys, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and The Frontmen of Country.

Even Bruce Springsteen, whose Born in the USA was used to exhaustion by the Trump campaign, has called the President-elect a "moron" and said he "undermined the entire democratic tradition".

Perhaps unsurprisingly, The Boss was not invited by the Inaugural Committee to perform for Mr Trump.

Instead, here's a list of all those who declined and those who accepted the invite to play in the show dubbed "The Make America Great Again! Welcome Celebration".

Who WILL NOT be playing for Donald Trump:

Elton John

Reportedly a favourite of the President-elect, the Rocket Man was once listed by Mr Trump's transition team as the show's headliner - and an example of the newcomer's "pro-gay-rights stance".

But a statement from the singer's publicist was quick to deny his appearance, writing: "Incorrect. He will NOT be performing."

Andrea Bocelli

After TMZ first reported the Italian tenor was performing side-by-side with America's Got Talent star Jackie Evancho, The New York Post said Mr Bocelli decided not to perform for "fear of a public backlash".

Celine Dion

The Canadian superstar reportedly denied the invite, but not for political reasons.

According to TMZ, Celine was approached by her Las Vegas production company, but was already booked to perform on the same night.

Garth Brooks

A country star fits the profile of the bible-belt states where Mr Trump finds most of his supporters, but Brooks refused the invitation with a Facebook video, saying: "In the immortal words of Martin Luther King, the most durable thing that we've known is love.

"Again, can't thank the Obamas enough for serving this country, and may God hold Trump's hand in the decisions that he makes in this country's name as well."


Real name Richard Melville Hall, the American DJ laughed off Mr Trump's invitation, with a tweet saying: "I was just asked by a booking agent if I would consider DJing at one of the inaugural balls for #trump... Hahahahaha, wait, Hahahaha, really?"

He later suggested he would DJ if the President-elect released his tax returns.

Rebecca Ferguson

The former X Factor runner-up said she would "graciously accept" to sing at the ceremony, on one condition.

Ferguson said she would only perform the civil rights protest song Strange Fruit - a track of historical significance which, according to Ferguson, "was blacklisted in the United States for being too controversial".

She later refused to sing, as did...

Charlotte Church

The Welsh singer tweeted: "Your staff have asked me to sing at your inauguration, a simple Internet search would show I think you're a tyrant."

Who WILL be playing for Donald Trump:

Toby Keith

The country singer is the biggest name in the line-up. Keith is performing on Thursday's pre-inaugural ceremony, and has refused to "apologise for performing for our country or military".

Lee Greenwood

Another big name in the country/Americana genre, Greenwood says singers "should never use the stage as a political pulpit".

3 Doors Down

Arguably the second biggest name of the show, the Mississippi band lost its momentum after the release of the 1999 hit Kryptonite.

Playing at Trump's inauguration, the band hope to bring back the old flame but have faced online criticism.

Jackie Evancho

Swinging between number one and two at Billboard's Classical Musica chart for the past two months, Evancho's Someday at Christmas album has been on the rise since the announcement she would perform at the inauguration.

"Jackie Evancho's album sales have skyrocketed after announcing her Inauguration performance," the President-elect said in a tweet. "Some people just don't understand the 'Movement'."

Jon Voight

The Oscar-winning actor and father of UN ambassador Angelina Jolie has been one of the few vocal Trump supporters in Hollywood.

The conservative star sparred with Robert De Niro - after the Raging Bull star called Voight "delusional" - and even made a video "plea to save America".

At the ceremony, Voight will presumably speak, rather than sing.


There are a few duos, quartets, supergroups, marching bands, big bands and choirs scheduled to play. These include The Radio City Rockettes, The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, The Frontmen of Country, The Piano Guys, Tim Rushlow & His Big Band and Big & Rich.

Sky Atlantic will have a special report tonight on the legacy of Obama's presidency, at 8pm.

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