Personal Lives

Janet Reno, Music Mogul

  • Print

The woman who became famous as the first female attorney general of the United States is now making a mark in an entirely different line of work: music production.

Janet Reno, 69, has put together a three-CD package, Song of America, that provides a musical history of the country, and goes on sale in stores tomorrow, reports the Miami Herald. In the course of this nine-year project, she hobnobbed with well-known singers, attending the 2005 Grammy awards, for instance, in order to recruit artists to cover classic songs and put a new spin on them.

”It was fascinating,” Reno says of the music awards ceremony. ‘It was a festival. They would ask me, ‘What are you doing here?’ and they’d look at me in stunned amazement when I told them.”

Among those who signed on: John Mellencamp, Janis Ian and the Blind Boys of Alabama. The musical history begins with the “Lakota Dream Song” and ends with “Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning,” a song inspired by the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

In addition to serving as executive producer of Song of America, Reno has also been active in the Innocence Project and other groups seeking to reform the justice system and overturn wrongful convictions.

Give us feedback, share a story tip or update, or report an error.