25 years of music

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Lin-Manuel Miranda’s ‘Hamilton,’ as vital as ever, opens in San Francisco (L.A. Times):

[…] But the deafening din crackled with the spirit of a communal rally. The musical’s full-throated affirmation of diversity, inclusion and tolerance has taken on new urgency now that these values have fallen under sharp attack. “Hamilton” has become part of the resistance.

Parts civics class, part hip-hop extravaganza, part town hall, the show celebrates in rapping flow the ideals our Founding Fathers battled to define and defend nearly 2½ centuries ago — ideals that are still being vociferously fought over today.

The never-ending project of forming a “more perfect Union,” as the Preamble to the Constitution puts it, is what separates “Hamilton” from the other 21st century Broadway juggernauts (“The Producers,” “Wicked,” “The Book of Mormon”) that have given theater a sugar rush of popularity.

Hamilton and Lafayette’s high-five moment on the battlefield acknowledging the contribution of immigrants to the cause of freedom (“We get the job done”) has been provoking thunderous applause since the show’s off-Broadway start at the Public Theater in 2015. But the cheers at the SHN Orpheum were tinged with the ironic recognition of President Trump’s immigrant-phobic policies and proposals. In loudly endorsing the sentiment of the characters, the audience seemed to be rooting on its own activism and dissent.

Similarly, the song “History Has Its Eyes on You” takes on an even more mournful resonance than before. The image of George Washington shouldering with grave dignity his responsibilities as leader of the burgeoning democracy stands in stark contrast to the partisan shenanigans going on in Washington today. History not only has its eyes on us but it also helps us to see how far we are falling short.

“Hamilton” simultaneously highlights some of very real strides that have been made in the struggle for liberty and equality. The musical’s multicultural cast, portraying seminal figures in the story of America’s founding, is part of the show’s progressive message.

I’ll have more to say about the virtuoso spell of Joshua Henry’s Aaron Burr, the swaggering vigor of Emmy Raver-Lampman’s Angelica Schuyler and the intelligent if somewhat muted presence of Michael Luwoye’s Hamilton when the production opens in L.A. But the kinetic charge of the show comes in large part from the teamwork of this diverse and dynamic ensemble.

“Hamilton” is a generational phenomenon, a box office sensation that has been critically hailed for its groundbreaking style. The only Broadway musical in the last 25 years that remotely compares to it in terms of cultural impact is “Rent,” but Miranda’s masterpiece has a wider reach. Not many shows can claim former Vice President Dick Cheney and Jay Z as fans.

The New York company’s controversial curtain call speech to then-Vice President-elect Mike Pence, who caught the show after the election, may have provoked twitter thunderbolts from Trump, but “Hamilton” is open to all who uphold bedrock democratic principles. No American musical understands better the ideological combat that goes into governing. Patriots from both sides of the aisle have sung the show’s praises. […]

Twenty-five years ago Tuesday, a career-defining single was born — and with it, endless sitcom jokes and rap homages. It was referenced in Sing, the 2016 animated children’s movie, and in Shrek years before that. But when it debuted in 1992, there were those who took it to heart as an anthem of body positivity.

Baby Got Back” begins kind of a heartbreaking scene: a white woman talking to her friend Becky, straight up mocking a black woman. The man behind the song, Anthony Ray — better known as Sir Mix-a-Lot — says he didn’t make that up.

“It was like a blown-out, glorified version of what was actually being said at that time,” he says. “Basically, pop culture was waif-thin, heroin addict, big hair, fake boobs — you know, that was what they thought beautiful was. And because of the way it was discussed publicly, it made women who had naturally curvy bodies … run around with sweaters wrapped around their waist.”

“When I heard it, I just felt so — it was so affirming,” says Erin Aubry Kaplan. In the mid-‘90s, Kaplan was staff writer at LA Weekly. She and wrote a big feature article about the paradoxical way black women’s butts were seen — using “Baby Got Back” as an epigraph.

Sir Mix-a-Lot On 25 Years Of 'Baby Got Back’

Photo: Rick Kern/WireImage/Getty Images

Joe Hisaishi by Hayao Miyazaki 

In 2008 a concert was held at Tokyo’s 14,000-seat Nippon Budoukan venue to mark 25 years of musical collaboration between composer Joe Hisaishi and film maker Hayao Miyazaki and as a thank you Hayao Miyazaki created this portrait which would be used for the event poster. 

This massive concert featured performances of these signature Miyazaki film scores composed by Hisaishi, conducting from the piano, and the 200-member New Japan Philharmonic World Dream Orchestra, along with six featured vocalists, the 800 combined voices of the Ippan Koubo, Ritsuyuukai and Little Singers of Tokyo choirs, plus a 160-piece marching band. Altogether there were some 1160 musicians and singers on stage, backed by images from Miyazaki’s films projected on a giant screen.

Watch the full concert in glorious HD below

anonymous asked:

what are your top ten (twenty?) shinee moments?

it took me 3 years but I finally managed to come up with my top 10 20 25 (mostly ot5; some ot2, etc.) moments and I gotta say ily for making me revisit all of these okay

they are each very very special to me whether they depict smiles or tears (or both), so, a heads up: the following list was arranged in random order! and a friendly reminder that these are /my/ favorite for some reason or another; it’s fine if anyone doesn’t agree, you don’t have to. 

1. I’m your boy tour @ tokyo dome ending talk (2015)

this should go without comments, but… even though this list isn’t sorted in any particular way, if there’s any moment that deserves to top it… this is it. tokyo dome had been their dream since japanese debut days, and watch it come to life was more than any of them, any of us could take. they cried, we cried, everywhere and everything was shinee and we didn’t allow ourselves nor anyone else to suppress our pride at how long they’d come, have come. it felt awesome to see everyone gathering together in a single mess of too many emotions.

2. that one time jinki murdered taemin at the JAT  (2013)

Keep reading

Unknown Jamael’s star role in Hamilton: 25-year-old cast in West End version of hit musical (Daily Mail):

Jamael Westman — a 25-year-old actor from Brixton, South London, fresh out of drama school — has won the coveted title role in the eagerly awaited London version of smash-hit musical Hamilton.

Westman, a Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts graduate (and fully trained football coach) won the role in President Obama’s favourite show after five auditions, including one in front of Hamilton’s creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, the show’s director Thomas Kail, music director Alex Lacamoire and producers Jeffrey Seller and Cameron Mackintosh.

The part of Alexander Hamilton is one of the landmark theatrical roles of the 21st century — and a towering achievement for the 6ft 4in actor who graduated from RADA only last year.

But Westman is an impressive character. He has deep feelings about what it means to be a black man in the UK. He’s confident. He told me that if he doesn’t know something, he’ll work at it until he masters it — whether it be playing a musical instrument, learning a role or sussing out how to play every position on a football team (even goalkeeper, which he hates).

[…]

He sang at the local Roman Catholic Church and Miles Davis, Marshall Mathers and Bob Marley were all part of the eclectic mix of music playing at home in South London, where he was raised by his Irish-born mother — a lecturer in sociology at Goldsmiths College — and his Jamaican-born football coach father.

Rapping, he declared, ‘is in my bones’. Which is one of the reasons he won the role.

Miranda told me that he was lucky enough to catch Jamael at a ‘call back’ in London at Cameron Mackintosh’s office, and he was bowled over by the countertenor. ‘He was just fantastic, and versatile, and all those things Hamilton needs to be,’ he said. ‘You know: “Young, scrappy and hungry.”’ (That’s a line, in case you’re wondering, from one of Hamilton’s best-known songs, My Shot.)

In fact, during my interview with Jamael, he used the very same line to describe himself.

Both Miranda and Mackintosh, in separate conversations in London and New York, observed that Jamael had the skills to make it seem as though each performance was being given for the first time.

‘Well, that’s the whole ball game, isn’t it?’ Lin-Manuel said. ‘To make it feel as though it’s happening for the first time on stage at night.’ He added that he’s seen a lot of people audition, both in the U.S. and UK, for the role that he created.

‘So when you know you’ve got it, you’ve got it — and I know we’ve really got it here, with Jamael.’

Miranda told me that when he was writing the concept album for Hamilton, he had hip-hop and R&B voices in mind.

‘I wasn’t thinking about what colour the people were. I was thinking: “Who’s the best rapper to embody Thomas Jefferson? Or Alexander Hamilton?”

‘I was having fun with the idea of matching rappers with these people,’ he said, adding that when the director, Thomas Kail, was developing the stage show, he decided to elevate that idea of diversity to a principle for the casting of the show.

‘When you take the people out of the stuff of legend, and destroy the statue version, it actually makes them more accessible,’ he said.

The Latin-American, Asian and Afro-Caribbean faces in his show mirror society.

That colour-blind idea resonates with Jamael, too. He said that the opportunity to work and play with a company ‘made up of people of colour, without the subject matter having anything to do with race’ would have a positive impact not only on him, but the whole ensemble — and the audience, too.

‘A story that traditionally would have been told by an all-white cast is being given a new lease of life, superseding the deluded expectations of prejudice.’

Jamael said he gets his confidence and strength from his mother. ‘Her people — my grandmother — are from Coose in County Galway; and I heard her stories, and the stories of my other grandparents.

‘Some came here from Ireland and Jamaica in the Fifties, and having heard their stories gave me an appreciation of their struggles. It’s what’s bought me to this place … to this very room where it happens,’ he said, a reference to another famous line in Hamilton.

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Watch: Pearl Jam - “25 Years of ‘Alive’”

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Bienvenue au club ! 25 ans de musique électronique
(Welcome to the club ! 25 years of electronic music)

French TV documentary about the club scene in France over the last 25 years. It’s in french but there is some great footage to watch even if you are not a french speaker.