With Lin-Manuel Miranda’s win at the Grammys, there’s really no better time to discuss the amazing nature of Hamilton than the present. While this article may be a little late to the game, fans of the show (including myself) certainly are not, especially with ticket prices for the show as high as they are.
I began listening to the Hamilton soundtrack early on in the first semester. Not to brag, but I probably had three whole lines memorized at that point (“Hamilton,” “Lafayette,” “and Peggy!”). But once I actually began listening to the whole cast album in order, I became very emotionally connected to the music and the characters. At this point, I could tell you every lyric, and I crush the Lafayette rap in “Guns and Ships” pretty hard for a white girl with no rhythm or actual rapping capabilities. I’ve been hooked since November, and there’s no going back now.
Should I be worried that the only music I’ve heard since November has been from Hamilton? Possibly, but my ~nonstop~ listening has made me stronger, my history knowledge unmatched—probably. Even now, I’m singing along to the album on shuffle (for inspiration, of course), and I can’t help loving every second of it. The way Lin-Manuel Miranda manages to weave words and harmonies together in songs such as “Nonstop” and even in “less” popular songs like “Farmer Refuted” is something I will never get over.
Hamilton has everything from intense rap battles (“Cabinet Battle #1” and “Cabinet Battle #2”) to heart-wrenching ballads (i.e. “Burn”). As someone addicted to singing, it’s really amazing to see a musical that incorporates so many different voices and genres. The Broadway hit has quickly become the voice of a generation, giving definitive proof that musicals are anything but dead. Hamilton succeeds in bringing Broadway to entirely new groups of people that maybe weren’t all about show tunes before.
It’s really no wonder the cast album won a Grammy, but here are five of my favorite songs from the soundtrack in no particular order:
“Guns and Ships”
Daveed Diggs’ amazing accented rap is fire. Nothing else compares to it, and it’s an amazing pump up song.
“The Schuyler Sisters”
This song is honestly perfect. I really don’t know what else to say about it other than: Listen to it.
Bittersweet and beautiful, Renee Elise Goldsberry kills it with every note.
“The Room Where It Happens”
“Burn” is quite possibly my favorite Broadway ballad of all time. Every time I listen to it, I want to be Phillipa Soo or at least have her amazing voice and control.
I bow down to Lin-Manuel Miranda, the man that read the history of Alexander Hamilton and immediately thought “hip-hop musical.” And I bow down to Alexander Hamilton, a name that many had forgotten and has, within the last year, risen to become more famous than most of our 43 presidents.