I did the last playlist update in December and took a little break (sorry to all of the Twitter and Instagram submissions I have yet to get to, I will, I promise). Well, kind of a break. I spent most of my so called break putting together my top 50 tracks of 2020 playlist (blog forthcoming I think) and scrupulously posting them one at a time on the Instagram story, a move that not only made me feel like a Venice Beach strutting Christian Loubaton know-what-that-is influencer, it also was an enormous waste of time. It seriously took so long. Like can you please look at it- it took away so much of my life to record each of the little 15 second frames off of Spotify and post each of them. You can find them on the Instagram highlights (I hate myself). The silver lining is it does look pretty dope.
Anyways, big musical theater nerd. I’ll admit I am not fully knowledgable of the genre (that was always my sister in our family) but I am going to list from my favorites that I listen to regularly. Some rules- I am only including one song from each musical, because if I didn’t this would be entirely Wicked and Next To Normal. And for that same reason I’m not going to rank them. Anyways without further ado:
‘A Miracle Would Happen/When You Come Home To Me’ – The Last 5 Years
This musical is cool, told in reverse chronological order from the man and woman’s perspective in the relationship (one starts from the beginning, one starts from the end and moves backwards). This has always been one of my favorites and in college I even remixed it on Garageband, and would play it on a loop until my roommates hit me with an intervention in the form of forcing their way into my room and demanding I stop or they were going to break all my shit.
‘Sonya Alone’ – The Great Comet of 1812
I liked this one so much I ranked it in my top ten songs of 2016, not knowing that this was a remake of an older musical (shit). So gorgeous, Brittain Ashford is unreal here. Honorable mention is No One Else, where Phillipa Soo entrances.
‘First Date/Last Night’ – Dogfight
My goodness… I haven’t even seen this one or heard the rest of the musical, but this got on my radar somehow and I’ve never looked back. I seriously listen to this at least once every few weeks and it just completely lowers my blood pressure and brings me back to neutral/sta-bliss (like stasis… you know?).
‘Never So Big’ – Here Lies Love
In true Indie Pong fashion I’m going to include the most indie music musical of all time here which is Here Lies Love by David Byrne of Talking Heads and Fatboy Slim of Fatboy Slim. The original recording features some amazing names like Florence or in this case SIA. nbd.
‘Corner Of The Sky’ – Pippen
In an homage to the onslaught of Wicked songs I’m holding myself back from posting here is an early Stephen Schwartz work that I discovered via an interview with Stephen Schwartz during the Wicked era (which is the past 17 years).
I love the message of this song so much, it’s so simple, so elegant, and so relatable.
‘Take Me Or Leave Me’ – RENT
This one is from a little musical called RENT,
This musical changed my life, we used to no joke sing this at the mall, I was cool tho (?).
Also Idina is the GOAT, obviously.
‘Maybe (Next To Normal)’ – Next To Normal
This is by far my favorite musical of all time (not by far, Wicked is right there, but after that by far). Anyone who’s ANYONE knows that the absolute gospel of modern musical theater is listening the titular Maybe (Next To Normal) through the ending (Light) so that you can be rebirthed through the relatable catharsis that is Next To Normal.
‘Days and Days’ – Fun Home
SO GORGEOUS. And haunting. By far the most commercial song from the Alison Bechdel (yes, of the Bechdel Test) based musical that is an unbelievably touching and important piece of art of the 21st Century.
‘The Internet Is For Porn’ – Avenue Q
I mean it is, porn and Indie Pong. This song could possibly be attributed to getting me into musical theater at a young age, because when I heard this shit in grade school it blew my mind. You might recgonize the Avenue Q team from the more recent Book Of Mormon for which they teamed up with the South Park guys.
And last but not least (actually first):
‘Defying Gravity’ – Wicked
There’s a million Wicked songs I could have put but come on, this is THE SONG. I’ve never felt anything like the first time I saw the intermission break of Wicked with the original broadway cast and the original Elphaba, Ana Gasteyer. So sing it with me!
Anyways yeah I agree I should probably just stick to Indie Music and get back to doing my job. Hope you enjoyed this little deeeeeeeeee- deeeeeeeeeeee- deeeeeeeTOOOOOUUUUUUURRRRRR!!!!!!! (like if I was singing it, you know)
Also “OOOOOOO no Hamilton I hate you Mates!” – everyone