Remixing the revolution


“Hamilton’s” mixtape cover

“History has its eyes on you.”

These lyrics are a perfect embodiment of the critically acclaimed play “Hamilton.” This musical has revolutionized Broadway and the theater industry itself. It has brought contemporary music to the stage and has one of the most diverse casts seen on Broadway.

Lin Manuel Miranda, the composer of “Hamilton,” credits Ron Chernow’s biography of Alexander Hamilton as his inspiration and immediately connected the Founding Father’s story with rap.

“Honestly, it just made sense,” Sukanya Barman (10) said.  “When I heard about it I was like ‘yeah, no that’s just weird,’ but after listening to it, everything kind of just fit and it all worked. I think that’s just amazing.”

Miranda began by studiously writing lyrics and performing a few songs. This early form of Miranda’s creation was referred to as the “Hamilton Mixtape. Eventually the mixtape came to life on stage when it was written into a musical. It quickly gained popularity, and soon enough, it was headlining on Broadway with tickets selling out months in advance.

The musical has set records and swept nearly every award show. It debuted as the number one Broadway cast album and as the number three rap album on Billboard, in addition to being nominated for a record 16 Tony awards and winning 11, as well as winning a Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album. Little did people know that there was more to come.

Miranda decided that it was time to reel back to the basics. He has released with a new “Hamilton” mixtape featuring some of the most coveted singers and rappers in the industry. Nas, Chance the Rapper, Alicia Keys and Kelly Clarkson are just a few of the artists headlining the tracklist.

“One of the great things about “Hamilton” is that it’s written for different styles within the musical itself, so it’s for each person to make it their own,” Tara Sandlin (10) said. “I’m hoping that the artists who record for the mixtape do the same thing and just make it their own because it’s a story about America then and America now, so I would love to see some of that music style of America now presented in the mixtape.”

There has been a lot of hype surrounding the release of the mixtape, and “Hamilton” fanatics are eager to see how it compares to the original soundtrack.

“I love the original, and it will hold a special place in my heart just to see, you know, Broadway and history and all that collide,” Sandlin said. “But I think that the mixtape is definitely unique. I haven’t seen it before, and so it’ll be different, but “Hamilton” is different too.”

The new mixtape is available for sale on Amazon and is sure to “blow us all away.”