It’s no surprise that the cast album for the hit musical Hamilton debuted on the rap Billboard charts at number 12 and now has broken records in the number one spot. This accolade is a testament to the power of the musicals’ message which really isn’t just about Alexander Hamilton. The question is, with the plethora of rap music readily available, why is a broadway cast album number one? How did the cast album beat out artists who are exclusively devoted to rap music like Fetty Wap, Drake and Future and The Game? In my opinion it’s because the music resonates. Lin-Manuel Miranda has spoken previously about how Hip Hop is the perfect language to tell the story of the founding fathers and he is correct.
The music of Hamilton feels true. It feels real to the listener. It hearkens back to the very best of what we know rap and the culture of hip hop can be because it tells the story of a man who desperately wanted to make it. Manuel’s songs of struggle, misunderstanding, triumph and failure in the musical make Alexander Hamilton, who many only knew as a man from bit of far away American history into every man. In a world where “Trap Queen” and “Hot Line Bling” describes fantastical situations that many of us don’t ever experience, the music of Hamilton tells the rest of our stories in a lyrical language that we can all understand.The universality of the story, the power of the music and drive of the arrangements envelope the listener in a story that could reflect any one of us. Hamilton captures all of us in one way or another and we have responded by making it number one.
Rappers beware. The important message is that the tides are turning and there is now a return to artistry in rap music and audiences are proving that it’s exactly what they want to hear. It is not limited by ethnicity and cannot be contained by the hood. Hamilton has turned the world of Broadway on its ear and now its coming for the music industry and I suspect Manuel will not be throwing away his shot.
The World is Wide Enough: Hamilton Second National Tour to Begin February 2018
Only days after launching the first national tour of Hamilton last week, producer Jeffrey Sellers announced that a second national tour will kick off in Seattle starting February 2018. After a six-week engagement, the tour will travel to Portland, Oregon; Salt Lake City, Utah; Costa Mesa, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Des Moines, Iowa; Cleveland, Ohio; and Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The second touring company will be the fourth Hamilton production to play concurrently in the U.S. Joining the first national tour (currently in San Fransisco before moving to L.A later this summer), the sit-down production in Chicago (which started September 2016), and the current Broadway production, with a London staging debuting in November of this year.
In a press statement, Seller comments:
“Beginning in 2018 more than 8,000 people a night will have the opportunity to see the show somewhere in North America. Indeed, Hamilton is for everyone. There has been tremendous interest in the show from markets across the country. The best way to get the show in front of as many people as possible is to form a new company to crisscross the country.”
The cast has yet to be announced, but keep checking into Broadway Black to be the first in the know!
Visit Hamilton for more information.
Montego Glover Set for The New York Pops at Feinstein’s/54 Below
Tony nominees Montego Glover, last seen in The Royale at Lincoln Center, and Tony Yazbeck are set to star with The New York Pops in a cabaret performance at Feinstein’s/54 Below in New York City on September 19 to perform some of their favorite show tunes. Tony Yazbeck replaces the previously announced Joshua Henry. The event, described as “an intimate evening of dining and entertainment” will be led by Pops music director Steven Reineke.
“The New York Pops annual cabaret evening is one of our most intimate and exciting events each year,” said Reineke in a statement. “The event raises money for our vital music education programs, which reach thousands of New York City children each year. Montego and Tony are both extremely talented (and busy) performers, and they are extraordinarily kind and generous people. We are all looking forward to hearing them perform up close and personal. This is going to be a tremendous night.”
All proceeds will support The New York Pops’ PopsEd music programs, which reach over 4,000 New York City students each year.
Single tickets range from $275-$500 and ticket packages begin at $2,500. To purchase, visit www.newyorkpops.org or call 212-765-7677.