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Hamilton: An American Musical [Edited Lyrics] [Original Broadway Cast Recording]

Hamilton: An American Musical [Edited Lyrics] [Original Broadway Cast Recording]

by Lin-Manuel MirandaLin-Manuel Miranda

CD

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Overview

Inspired by the Ron Chernow biography, Hamilton: An American Musical is an innovative, hip-hop-charged stage musical about U.S. founding father Alexander Hamilton. That's right, hip-hop (and ethnically diverse casting) meet the 18th century. Its creator, book writer, composer-lyricist, and lead actor, Lin-Manuel Miranda, had his Broadway breakthrough in 2008 with Into the Heights, a musical about the Latino-American Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights that also incorporated rap music into its rambunctious songbook. Miranda won a Tony and a Grammy for his songwriting for the Best Musical winner. With Hamilton, he draws on rap, contemporary R&B, pop, and classic show tunes for a dynamic style that isn't just ambitious but accessible and catchy -- and there's plenty of conventional melody. The well-over-two-hour production does a good job of balancing tone and styles, so for those who find rap, or rather theater balladry, something to be endured, relief is just around the corner. Recorded with care over several days instead of the usual single recording session, and with production oversight by Questlove and Black Thought of the Roots, the cast recording opens with alternately rapped and sung exposition on "Alexander Hamilton." Sure, the concept of rapping historical figures can take some adjusting to, but where vocals are concerned, rapping isn't that much different from recitative (between arias) in opera, chant, or any other type of rhythmic speaking ("Ya Got Trouble" from The Music Man). It's the decidedly non-period R&B/21st century pop-flavored music and modern vernacular (with explicit language) in the distant setting that takes some suspension of disbelief. Once that happens, and the listener is confronted with the device quickly and impressively, it's smooth sailing. The rhythm and word plays are at such high levels -- lyrics are often delivered rapid-fire with interruptions occurring seamlessly in rhyme and in tempo -- it's hard not to be won over pretty much from the start, especially with lyrics like the sung political advice, "Talk less, smile more/Don't let them know what you're against or for" and meticulous, smile-inducing rap rhymes ("skill with the quill," etc.). Hamilton's verbosity is a running joke in the show, which comes to an apex in the "Cabinet Battles," exercises in rhetorical grandiloquence executed via a rap smackdown between Hamilton (Miranda) and, among others, Thomas Jefferson (Daveed Diggs). Another standout is the tender pop ballad "Wait for It" by Leslie Odom, Jr. as Aaron Burr, and the cast. If there's a significant knock on the show, it's that there's so much information communicated in the songs -- facts, reading of documents, summaries of events -- it would certainly be tedious if not accompanied by an unusually entertaining presentation, and some will decide that it still is. However, given the musical's fairly radical rendering and the limited access to the show -- any Broadway show -- this recording seems a vital one, and time will tell if the musical is a watershed in big-budget musical theater. [Hamilton was also released in a clean version.]

Product Details

Release Date: 07/08/2016
Label: Atlantic
UPC: 0075678664045
catalogNumber: 556345

Tracks

Disc 1

  1. Act I: Alexander Hamilton
  2. Act I: Aaron Burr, Sir
  3. Act I: My Shot
  4. Act I: The Story of Tonight
  5. Act I: The Schuyler Sisters
  6. Act I: Farmer Refuted
  7. Act I: You'll Be Back
  8. Act I: Right Hand Man
  9. Act I: A Winter's Ball
  10. Act I: Helpless
  11. Act I: Satisfied
  12. Act I: The Story of Tonight (Reprise)
  13. Act I: Wait For It
  14. Act I: Stay Alive
  15. Act I: Ten Duel Commandments
  16. Act I: Meet Me Inside
  17. Act I: That Would Be Enough
  18. Act I: Guns and Ships
  19. Act I: History Has Its Eyes On You
  20. Act I: Yorktown (The World Turned Upside Down)
  21. Act I: What Comes Next?
  22. Act I: Dear Theodosia
  23. Act I: Non-Stop

Disc 2

  1. Act II: What'd I Miss
  2. Act II: Cabinet Battle #1
  3. Act II: Take a Break
  4. Act II: Say No to This
  5. Act II: The Room Where It Happens
  6. Act II: Schuyler Defeated
  7. Act II: Cabinet Battle #2
  8. Act II: Washington On Your Side
  9. Act II: One Last Time
  10. Act II: Know Him
  11. Act II: The Adams Administration
  12. Act II: We Know
  13. Act II: Hurricane
  14. Act II: The Reynolds Pamphlet
  15. Act II: Burn
  16. Act II: Blow Us All Away
  17. Act II: Stay Alive (Reprise)
  18. Act II: It's Quiet Uptown
  19. Act II: The Election of 1800
  20. Act II: Your Obedient Servant
  21. Act II: Best of Wives and Best of Women
  22. Act II: The World Was Wide Enough
  23. Act II: Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Lin-Manuel Miranda   Primary Artist,Vocals
Robin Macatangay   Banjo,Guitar
Alex Lacamoire   Conductor,Keyboards
Jonathan Dinklage   Concert Master
Anja Wood   Cello
James Harcourt   Vocals,cast
Jonathan Groff   Vocals
Renée Elise Goldsberry   Vocals
Laura Sherman   Harp
Christopher Jackson   Vocals
Randy Cohen   Synthesizer
Seth Stewart   cast
Neil Haskell   cast
Erin Benim   Violin
Leslie Odom   Vocals
Richard Hammond   Bass (Vocal),Keyboards
Betsy Struxness   cast
Thayne Jasperson   Vocals,cast
Ephraim Sykes   Vocals,cast
Ariana Debose   Vocals,cast
Sasha Hutchings   Vocals,cast
Jon Rua   Vocals,cast
Kurt Crowley   Keyboards
Alysha Deslorieux   cast
Okieriete Onaodowan   Vocals
Daveed Diggs   Vocals
Stephanie Klemons   cast
Mario Gotoh   Violin,Viola
Andres Forero   Drums
Benny Reiner   Percussion,Keyboards
Anthony Ramos   Vocals
Carleigh Bettiol   cast
Austin Smith   cast
Emmy Raver-Lampman   cast
Javier Muñoz   cast
Jasmine Cephas-Jones   Vocals
Morgan Marcell   cast
Voltaire Wade-Greene   cast
Andrew Chappelle   cast
Sydney James Harcourt   Vocals
Phillipa Soo   Vocals
Hamilton Cast Ensemble   Choir, Chorus

Technical Credits

Arthur Sullivan   Text
Sean "Puffy" Combs   Text
James Mtume   Text
Christopher Martin   Text
Sylvia Robinson   Text
William Schwenk Gilbert   Text
Bill Sherman   Producer
Melvin Glover   Text
Tariq Trotter   Producer,Executive Producer
Earl Simmons   Text
Jean Claude "Poke" Olivier   Text
Christopher Wallace   Text
Alex Lacamoire   Arranger,Producer,Orchestration,Music Direction
Kasseem Dean   Text
Paul Tazewell   Costume Design
Kejuan Muchita   Text
Eric Poland   Equipment Rental
Edward Fletcher   Text
Nevin Steinberg   Sound Design
Brig Berney   Company Manager
Lin-Manuel Miranda   Arranger,Composer,Lyricist,Producer,Executive Producer,Book
J. Philip Bassett   Production Stage Manager
Thomas Kail   Director
Randy Cohen   drum programming
Derik Lee   Engineer
Andy Blankenbuehler   Choreographer
Jason Robert Brown   Composer,Lyricist
Khary Kimani Turner   Text
Clifton Nathaniel Chase   Text
Ahmir Thompson   Producer,Executive Producer
Will Wells   Drum Samples,Loop Editing
Sarah Tudzin   Engineer
Charles G. LaPointe   Wig Designer
David Korins   Scenic Design
Bethany Knox   Casting
Diane Vadnal   Marketing
Albert Johnson   Text

Customer Reviews