We’ve all been following the “Hamilton” craze as its success has grown to unprecedented heights. This musical was the perfect blend of history, hip-hop, acting and intrigue. However, all good things seem to lose their charm after a while. The “Hamilton” hype seemed to be dying down, but then they did it again and now you’re sucked in all over again. “The Hamilton Mixtape” was released on Friday, over a year after the debut of the show on Broadway. The songs are sung by artists from all over the genre spectrum, and some songs even have new melodies to them. Not only that, but we get a taste of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s creative process when we listen to demos and songs from the other perspective. This inspired mixtape is enough to get anyone motivated to take on the world, or even just their finals. In no particular order, here are the best songs from the soundtrack:
- Wrote My Way Out (Nas, Dave East, Lin-Manuel Miranda): The way these artists came together for this perfect arrangement cannot be matched. This presentation of Hamilton’s life story in relation to how others perceive him was perfectly put together. Listening to Hamilton’s character, and then Nas over it comparing his life to Hamilton’s, is masterful.
- Burn (Andra Day): Part of the reason this mixtape works so well is the way they cast the new singers. This song was already emotional for me. Who wouldn’t cry listening to Eliza profess her deepest feelings on stage? The way Andra Day captures exactly what Eliza felt brings you into the scene so well that you can’t help but sympathize for her like you are her best friend.
- Cabinet Battle 3 (Demo) (Lin-Manuel Miranda): Seeing what Miranda originally pictured for the show and then comparing it to what actually happened is oddly satisfying. Basically he’s a genius no matter what, seeing what the show could’ve been become makes you feel as if you’re a part of the process.
- Say Yes to This (Jill Scott): The other side of “Say No To This” not only leaves you wanting more, but shows you the perspective of a character the audience straight-up hates in the play as it stands. Giving her a song was such an interesting choice because it was like giving a voice to the voiceless.
- Congratulations (Dessa): Talk about sassy, emotional and raw. The blatant accusations against Hamilton and the accurate blows make the story in the song come alive, along with the relationships Hamilton ruined when he published his affair. Listening to Angelica rip Hamilton apart made the narrative that much more real.
- You’ll Be Back (Jimmy Fallon, The Roots): Jimmy Fallon not only adds his funny touch to the song, but executes it amazingly well. The song requires a certain kind of delivery that only Fallon could accomplish with such ease and finesse. Pair that with The Roots and you have the perfect song to cheer you up in the middle of finals week preparation.
- Dear Theodosia (Regina Spektor, Ben Folds): The most beautiful songs in the musical just got a twist and it’s amazing. If you ever need to feel engulfed in so many emotions at once, just listen to this song. The arrangement stuns and the two chosen for the song really connect.
- That Would Be Enough (Alicia Keys): Talk about girl power. Alicia Keys puts her all into this performance of one of the most emotional songs in the musical. Nothing’s better than listening to a song where you know the artist truly cares about the delivery of the song.