- OnStage New York Columnist
For those who remember, my first ever post for OnStage was a list of the top 10 Hamilton Songs. I only saw it fitting that sense I created that list I must do another list ranking the songs on the soaring Hamilton Mixtape. Below you will find my list and I hope we can all agree, or at least, disagree respectfully.
Honourable Mention: Washingtons By Your Sides
This is without a doubt what the Mixtape was meant to embody. Taking lyrics and melodies from Hamilton and placing them in the hands of a Hip Hop/ Rap star like Wiz Khalifa and seeing what happens. I like this track, and it sure is catchy but it just doesn’t have the depth that other songs on this list have. So it remains an Honourable Mention.
10. It’s Quiet Uptown
This track surly has changed positions from my original list of Hamilton songs, where it ranked number one overall. That being said, I still do enjoy this song and I can only listen in awe of Kelly Clarkson’s vocals but it just wasn’t as impactful as the original. Although I love the idea of this song from a female’s perspective, it was just to “pop-ish” for what this song needs. It frequently exchanged sweat, tender moments for loud belting and it’s just not needed here.
9. History Has It’s Eyes On You
This track truly is a unique and special one on this album. It trades the rap and synthesizers for traditional piano and gospel. I couldn’t imagine anyone other John Legend stepping to the plate for this number. My only criticism would be this song is just to repetitive, I felt there needed to be more room in the verses to explore more themes that could have applied to the chorus.
8. Who Tells Your Story
Here we have another example of an industry icon getting their hands on some of Lin’s fantastic music and creating new art. Common owns this song, he gives it so much depth and personality that the listener can’t help but get attached.
7. Immigrants (We Get The Job Done)
This is song is so important, now more than ever. With the rising political tension surrounding immigrants in America these days this song gives a voice for so many fighting for justice. It has the perfect balance of frustration and diplomacy that it begins to spark a conversion rather than judgment on the subject.
6. My Shot
This is impressive because “My Shot” didn’t even make my list of top 10 songs. It is honestly the song I skip most frequently in the show, behind Schuyler Sisters. However, the Mixtape makes me love this song. It perfectly blends modern hip hop with the Hamilton score and you can’t help but enjoy listening to it. Plus, who doesn’t love Busta Rhymes?
This song is this high on the list, simply for what it is. The listener is taken on a journey where they, unless having prior knowledge, try to figure out what they are listening to. They discover it is a deleted song from Hamilton which features Angelica confronting Alexander after he publishes the Reynolds Pamphlet. Simply incredible and I wish this had been kept!
4. Valley Forge (Demo)
This song is similar to the last in that it is a deleted song, of sorts, which takes place during the battle of Valley Forge and starts from the perspective of Thomas Paine and although we hear pieces that made it into the show during “Stay Alive” it is absolutely unique. It gives us an inside look as to what it must have been like to be Lin and having to sing all the parts and listen back before there were other people on board with the project. This also has a musical tone unlike any other in the show or on the Mixtape; this ghostly and haunting slow song is truly one of this albums best.
3. Wrote My Way Out
This song is just a perfect collaboration. Having a hook from “Hurricane” mixed with Nas and Aloe Blacc and Lin himself from In The Heights? Yes, please! This song really identifies with the idea that for most rappers, just like Hamilton, you literally have to write your way out of your tragic life. It is undeniably flawless and I could listen to it all day!
2. Dear Theodosia (Reprise)
This one may shock some people but there is no doubt, Chance the Rapper has the most emotional moments of this whole album. He, dare I say, gives Leslie a run for his money with this song. He sounds utterly sincere and you can tell he is directly singing it about his young daughter, Kinsley.
I don’t think this one should be a shock to anyone, it is without question the best song on this album. Sia’s vocals are shockingly perfect and compliment the music perfectly. Also, as if Sia wasn’t enough, we get QUEEN LATIFAH too!? Not only do we get the queen, we get her rapping again and making us love this song all over again. This song, I must say, left us all…..satisfied.
Well, that’s the list! Feel free to share/comment and let me know what you think!