First Listen: Cast Recording , 'Hamilton'
September 21, 2015 9:22 AM   Subscribe

"This is musical theater made by someone who knows rap to be all our cultural lingua franca, whose sense of humor is legible to people like us. It is songwriting done within rap's regulations and limitations. It's a work of historical fiction that honors the sentiments of rap, a play off collective memory that feels overwhelming personal." NPR is now streaming the Cast Recording of the hit broadway play Hamilton (previously).
posted by DynamiteToast (182 comments total) 70 users marked this as a favorite
 
I haven't seen the musical, but I know kind of a lot about Alexander Hamilton, and I am loving the shit out of this. Thanks for posting.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 9:25 AM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


how lucky are we to be alive right now
posted by prefpara at 9:28 AM on September 21, 2015 [27 favorites]


I was a sobbing mess by the end; so glad I'm working from home today. Don't know how I'm going to handle myself when I actually see the show in November.
posted by kmz at 9:32 AM on September 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


The play debuted about the beginning of the year? It feels like I've been waiting much longer.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 9:32 AM on September 21, 2015


I've seen it twice and I still am completely overwhelmed by how good it is, sitting in my office tearing up at the end of Act I.
posted by Mavri at 9:33 AM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


This is so fabulous. I heard a bit on Morning Edition earlier and am so glad it exists.
posted by witchen at 9:34 AM on September 21, 2015


This is amazing. I purchased it several weeks ago only on the endorsement of ThePinkSuperhero and she did not mislead me. This feels (pardon the word) revolutionary.
posted by ColdChef at 9:35 AM on September 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


The play debuted about the beginning of the year? It feels like I've been waiting much longer.

The original Hamilton mixtape was performed in 2009... and there's been anticipation building ever since.
posted by kmz at 9:39 AM on September 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Fantastic. Can't wait to see it when I get the chance.
posted by Mchelly at 9:45 AM on September 21, 2015


I just finished listening to it. As incredibly fun as the beginning is, I didn't expect for it to get so sad and beautiful towards the end. It's really wonderful, and I hope it's still going strong the next time I make it up to New York. I think I'll start it again now.
posted by DynamiteToast at 9:46 AM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I've seen the show, and like it okay (it's not a great show, but the music is really great and interesting.) But I am jamming to the cast album today.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:46 AM on September 21, 2015


Ah, thx kmz. Thought I was starting to lose it there.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 9:46 AM on September 21, 2015


We hold these truths to be self-evident
that all men are created equal–
and when I meet Thomas Jefferson,
I’ma compel him to include women in the sequel!
I need to find the billable code for "snap my fingers and say YAAAAAAAAS GURL" #lawyered
posted by prefpara at 10:15 AM on September 21, 2015 [14 favorites]


Yes yes yes!
posted by Zephyrial at 10:22 AM on September 21, 2015


Seriously, this is going to change is changing Broadway like nothing has since West Side Story. I wish tickets weren't so damn hard to get, but I'm also really happy that tickets are so damn hard to get.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 10:25 AM on September 21, 2015 [9 favorites]


I am amazed by how much I am enjoying this. Well, maybe it will come to Canada, or our dollar will stop falling off a cliff.
posted by jeather at 10:52 AM on September 21, 2015


In case anyone hasn't seen it, an amazing (early) performance by Miranda at the White House.
posted by lubujackson at 11:02 AM on September 21, 2015 [8 favorites]


Oh my God, finally! Waited so long. Now I just need to find a way to get to Broadway and see it live. I'll still regret never seeing Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson and BBAJ is basically "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" compared to what Hamilton pulls off.
posted by absalom at 12:17 PM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Holy crap. I'm listening to a rapping Marquis de Lafayette. This is ... different.
posted by kimberussell at 1:02 PM on September 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


Wait until you get to the cabinet meetings! (I love the cabinet meetings.)
posted by Mavri at 1:09 PM on September 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


This is fantastic, and just what I needed today. Already ugly-cried through it. Love the South Pacific, Pirates of Penzance and In the Heights references, but the whole thing is so rich far above and beyond those references.

Oh my God, finally! Waited so long. "Wait For It" (which I might have listened to an embarrassing number of times now) is kind of the theme song for our anticipation here. But at least it dropped early!

Love doesn't discriminate/Between the sinners and the saints/It takes, and it takes, and it takes/And we keep loving anyway/We laugh and we cry and we break and we make our mistakes..
posted by ilana at 1:44 PM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm stunned at the vocal power of the female leads. They leave the male leads in the dust.

My other revelation is how unrevolutionary this is, and not that it's a bad thing. The hip-hop influence requires no mention, but this is also unmistakably Broadway, such a perfect fusion.
posted by hwestiii at 2:14 PM on September 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


After finishing it for the second time, I relistened to "Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story", and while it's such a sad song as Eliza wonders whether she did enough to tell Hamilton's story with the time she has, the song is answered in the fact that a bunch of people are now praising a broadway show about his life and spending their Mondays listening to people sing (and rap) about him.
posted by DynamiteToast at 2:21 PM on September 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


I prefer musicals live to the cast album, particularly if I haven't seen the musical, but everything I've heard makes me want to see this badly enough that I may break my rule and listen first.
posted by immlass at 5:35 PM on September 21, 2015


I am definitely a huge sucker for musicals, but I would be lying if I said I didn't get serious goosebumps while listening to "My Shot".
posted by ruhroh at 6:42 PM on September 21, 2015


I'm not a huge musical fan, but I'm already on my second listen. All the praise seemed like it might be hype, but wow, it is not. What a tremendous achievement, and what a way to make our history vital and lively and even more relevant. It's art like Hamilton that makes me think, yeah, this is my America, and I'm proud to be American.
posted by yasaman at 8:21 PM on September 21, 2015 [10 favorites]


What a tremendous achievement, and what a way to make our history vital and lively and even more relevant.

It just occurred to me that schoolkids in 10-20 years might be watching recorded versions of this in high school. I definitely think I would've had an easier time keeping all the founding fathers straight with this "learning aid".
posted by DynamiteToast at 10:10 PM on September 21, 2015


This is amazing. I cannot word well enough to get across how blown at I was by my first listen! I ended up crying at work, and can't stop listening - I really enjoyed the linked White House performance, too.
posted by harujion at 4:53 AM on September 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


EVERYONE GIVE IT UP FOR AMERICA'S FAVORITE FIGHTIN' FRENCHMAAAAAAAAAAAN
posted by prefpara at 6:39 AM on September 22, 2015 [12 favorites]


This reminds me of hearing the streaming of Book of Mormon (musical) on NPR in the same way, That was in 2011 and BoM finally made it out to my opposite end of the country what, 3-4 years later? I only just saw it two months ago. So after this I've got another 3-4 years to wait until Hamilton makes it somewhere where I can actually SEE it.

*sigh*
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:43 AM on September 22, 2015 [2 favorites]


Holy balls, this is great.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:08 AM on September 22, 2015 [2 favorites]


Well, listened to it three times while doing data entry yesterday, so I figured I should go ahead and pre-order the soundtrack so I can keep giving it up for America's favorite fighting Frenchman and start working on Ten Dissertation Commandments even after it's no longer on First Listen.
posted by ChuraChura at 11:37 AM on September 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


Well I am planning a trip to NYC for March now. Thanks.
posted by jeather at 12:53 PM on September 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


All About the Hamiltons
A new musical brings the Founding Fathers back to life—with a lot of hip-hop.
posted by ColdChef at 1:31 PM on September 22, 2015 [5 favorites]


How to Be Amazing
posted by ColdChef at 1:32 PM on September 22, 2015 [7 favorites]


go ahead and call me the devil you aspire to my level you aspire to malevolence #greatness
posted by prefpara at 6:39 AM on September 23, 2015


That New Yorker link answered my question of which biography inspired this. Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton.

It just occurred to me that schoolkids in 10-20 years might be watching recorded versions of this in high school.

It's the new 1776.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:39 AM on September 23, 2015 [1 favorite]


They sell Chernow's book in the lobby with the rest of the swag. He's also briefly in this video from opening night of various people rapping the first number.
posted by Mavri at 8:13 AM on September 23, 2015


Hamilton killed irony.
posted by absalom at 3:03 PM on September 23, 2015 [8 favorites]


I was relistening and while listening to Helpless I knew it was making me think of a Beyonce song but couldn't put my finger on it, and when googling found this link chronicling some of the hip-hop references. The Beyonce song was Countdown. This musical just keeps getting better.
posted by DynamiteToast at 7:06 AM on September 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


My favorite pervasive reference so far is the 10 Crack Commandments.
posted by ChuraChura at 7:27 AM on September 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


So what are the odds that "Helpless" will cross over to the radio charts? When was the last time a Broadway musical did that? Rent?
posted by fings at 7:59 AM on September 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


I feel like "Wait For It" could totally be a radio hit too.
posted by kmz at 8:02 AM on September 24, 2015 [2 favorites]


Can't stop listening! Reliving the show again and again.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:05 AM on September 24, 2015 [5 favorites]


EVERYONE GIVE IT UP FOR AMERICA'S FAVORITE FIGHTIN' FRENCHMAAAAAAAAAAAN = one of my favorite live moments, no joke. He jumps into center stage almost like he was flying.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:06 AM on September 24, 2015 [7 favorites]


That New Yorker link answered my question of which biography inspired this. Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton.

The book is for sale in the lobby of the theater. That's the dream, right there- write a great book, somebody randomly picks it up as inspiration for a HUUUUUUGE project that drives a steady stream of buyers to the book you already finished. Ca-ching.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:12 AM on September 24, 2015


Dear Theodosia gives me serious Wheels of a Dream feelings. I love it.
You will come of age with our young nation
We’ll bleed and fight for you, we’ll make it right for you
If we lay a strong enough foundation
We’ll pass it on to you, we’ll give the world to you

And you’ll blow us all away
Someday, someday
Yeah, you’ll blow us all away
Someday, someday
posted by ChuraChura at 9:00 AM on September 24, 2015 [2 favorites]




From Slate, the hip hop and rap references and allusions in Hamilton, track by track.
posted by yasaman at 10:04 AM on September 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm listening to this now and it's amazing. I'm not versed enough in hip hop or rap to get references, but I love it anyway.
posted by immlass at 10:21 AM on September 24, 2015


Brief side note: A few references, including nods to Brand Nubian and “Blame It on the Alcohol,” didn’t make the transition from the Public Theater to Broadway, due to clearance issues, and so aren’t mentioned in the breakdown below.

Ugh.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 11:02 AM on September 24, 2015


The complete lyrics to the show. Crowdsourced. FANS: THEY GET THE JOB DONE.
posted by ColdChef at 12:55 PM on September 24, 2015 [14 favorites]


Oh man: The one scene from the show missing from the recording. (Spoilers!)
posted by kmz at 1:25 PM on September 24, 2015 [9 favorites]


Also, I love that out of the 6 Tumblrs LMM follows (5 really if you discount the default staff), MBMBAM is one of them.
posted by kmz at 1:57 PM on September 24, 2015


I'm not sure if there's more to it than them being big fans of each other but I follow Griffin and Justin on twitter and they've raved about Miranda and Hamilton in the past.
posted by DynamiteToast at 2:07 PM on September 24, 2015


Oh, they're like, good buddies. Lin's guested on MBMBAM, they're in a fantasy football league together, Justin and Griffin and Lin even ventured into Flavortown. There's also at least one full reference to MBMBAM in Hamilton.
posted by kmz at 2:17 PM on September 24, 2015


I could not be happier how and when and where this landed. One of my preps is AP US History, and we just got to the Revolutionary period this week. I listened to this twice when I got home on Tuesday and have already dropped a good chunk of it into the lesson plan.

See, I've been using "The Alexander Hamilton Mix-Tape" in all my classes since 2009. "The Alexander Hamilton Rap," by now, has become word-of-mouth legend around the school, so much so that kid's I haven't even taught ask me about it. It was pretty amazing to just come into class, straight face, and just start dropping tracks right.

Even better: Monday I used that old saw parody "Too Late to Apologize : A Declaration" to discuss the Declaration of Independence, since we already tackle Common Sense as our period source. Since I already kind of jokingly frame the Declaration of Independence as an open breakup letter*, hearing all the King George songs as sort of "Crazy B----" style lamentations, I just walked into class the next day and started with.

"Yesterday, the Continental Congress wrote their breakup letter. Let's hear the King's response," and played 'You'll Be Back,' mostly for the WTF/Doubletake grabber. They chucked and we just moved on with a vanilla lesson - strategies, advantages, disadvantages - but when we get to Howe's initial invasion and Washington's appointment as General, I just started playing 'Right Hand Man'. Watching them go from confusion, to the slow widening of the moon eyes, to the final "are you fucking kidding me, is this really happening right now?" jaw drop when Washington jumps on after the drop. Then when we got to Yorktown, I start "Guns and Ships" (LAFAYETTE!), and they start grinning because they recognize the overture (since it's the original "Mix Tape"), but then all these strange words start coming out that are not that song, they finally put it together. They're not nearly as excited about it as I am, but a bunch of them just went home and listened to the entire thing. I probably should have dropped 'Yorktown,' too, but I have to actually do legitimate teaching at some point.

It probably doesn't hurt that I work at a school with an optional focus on the creative and performing arts.

It's not even the most sophisticated lesson, probably, but not bad for something that the general public only had access to for like 24 hours. It's actually injected a lot of joy back into me teaching the class, since professionally I'm basically going through a mental breakdown.

And we haven't even gotten to the formation of Washington's Cabinet. CABINET MEETING! It's given me a lot of reason to look forward to at least the next couple of weeks ahead in a year I don't have much reason to look forward to anything. The entire second act is just chock full of amazing stuff: Easy to use selection or even whole songs for 'One Last Time,' the Cabinet Battles, 'Washington On Your Side,' and the 'Election of 1800.' Also, since my days on the Adams administration is already called the "Federalist Flameout," I can literally just drop "The Adams Administration" into the first slide and let it play as an introduction.

I'm especially excited, because I've already incorporated some songs from 1776 into my program, and spend an entire class introducing Jacksonian Democracy through selected (and edited) version of the far inferior Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. So, basically, the class now bridges everything from the pre-Revolution through the Trail of Tears via musical theater. And I'm not even a big musical nerd. (But, probably a nerd.)

Sorry, I'm just sort of insanely, embarrassingly obsessed with this show. I mean, I've basically never stopped waiting for it since I first heard "Mix Tape" in like 2009, so I like to think I've earned it a little bit.
posted by absalom at 4:20 PM on September 24, 2015 [49 favorites]


DynamiteToast: "But with HAMILTON, I felt as though @Lin_Manuel had found a way to give American history back to us — all of us."

Yeah, so much this.

If we really believe in the American experiment, in the American idea, that all men are created equal, this history has GOT to belong to everybody. Hamilton, Jefferson, Washington, Burr, their skin may have been white by historical accident, but if we truly believe in the promise and progress of America, their ideas must be universal. We must be able to speak them, and hear them, from Americans of every race, color, creed, gender.

As an inveterate American history nerd, I feel like Hamilton is among the Americaniest things that ever Americaned, taking the history and ideas and mythology of our Republic and putting them in a modern vernacular form. These are living ideas, a living experiment, a living ideal, and we have to keep pushing and pushing and pushing it towards perfection, and honoring and illuminating and enlivening American history with such deep enthusiasm, love, and understanding in a modern idiom, with diverse voices, is SO MUCH THAT. If America is going to work, of course we have to have a hip-hop Broadway musical about the Founding Fathers. When the Founding Fathers can no longer be translated into modernity, when we can no longer speak their words with modern voices, that's when we need to worry that we're not Americaning correctly. It gives me hope for us as a nation that our cultural life can give birth to something like Hamilton. There's some bad shit going on right now, but I think we are doing some things right.

And the ways it illuminates the 21st century immigrant experience, and gives voice to 21st century minority community concerns about policing, and so forth -- auggggggggh that's just beautiful icing on the fantastic case. I just want to snuggle this musical forever.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 6:09 PM on September 24, 2015 [23 favorites]


I have to wonder how the OWS crowd is reacting to this.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:18 PM on September 24, 2015


The one scene from the show missing from the recording.

And this is why I'm a big fan of piracy. They get the historical record straight.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:47 PM on September 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Downloaded. One minute after it was available online.
posted by ColdChef at 10:33 PM on September 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


The official lyrics.
posted by ColdChef at 10:39 PM on September 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah I "pre-ordered" it when I finished listening to it and have already downloaded it and it's ready to cycle onto my phone.
posted by immlass at 10:41 PM on September 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


I have a lot of intense worshipful feelings about this show and music, but right now, these capsule explanations of each song are making me chuckle:
Act 1
Act 2
posted by hippugeek at 12:12 AM on September 25, 2015 [20 favorites]


hippugeek, those are brilliant. I loved that Lin-Manuel reblogged those and tagged them "bahahaha". Accurate:

Right Hand Man: someone please give washington some help. no burr, not you
posted by harujion at 1:08 AM on September 25, 2015


what is the emoticon for when your heart is bursting
posted by prefpara at 4:36 AM on September 25, 2015 [7 favorites]


also have we said enough about "should we honor our treaty, king louie's head?" #!!!!
posted by prefpara at 6:44 AM on September 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


My favorite part of the show:
"ANGELICA!"
"ELIZA!"
"...and peggy."
posted by ColdChef at 7:39 AM on September 25, 2015 [11 favorites]


My favorite a-ha moment in the lyrics--these lines work for both characters played by each actor.

[MULLIGAN/MADISON & LAFAYETTE/JEFFERSON]
We fought with him

[LAURENS/PHILLIP]
Me? I died for him

[WASHINGTON]
Me? I trusted him

[ANGELICA, ELIZA, & MARIA]
Me? I loved him
posted by Mavri at 9:07 AM on September 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


Lin-Manuel Miranda Discusses How Hip-Hop Influenced Him and ‘Hamilton’: 1-hour podcast conversation between a NYT pop music reporter and Lin-Manuel Miranda. Just started listening, pretty great so far.
posted by kmz at 9:29 AM on September 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


March 11, 8 pm. So excited.
posted by jeather at 10:19 AM on September 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


I just finally listened to 10 minutes of this and it's so good I'm angry and going to stop listening to it until later because it deserves my full, not angry, not at work attention. (I missed this thread when it first came out and I just came to MetaFilter to make sure it existed.)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:46 AM on September 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


King George's songs all seem to be riffs on MIKA's style :)
posted by homodachi at 12:22 PM on September 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


This is so fantastic.
posted by flatluigi at 1:11 PM on September 25, 2015


Between performing 8 shows a week, doing Ham4Ham, being on Twitter all the time, recording the cast album, and _still_ finding time to write a goddamn Disney soundtrack, Lin-Manuel Miranda really does write like he's running out of time. If his wife asks him to go upstate though, he better do it!
posted by kmz at 2:38 PM on September 25, 2015 [15 favorites]


"The musical is also about history and how it gets told—in Miranda’s refrain, “who lives, who dies, who tells your story.” That, most often, is where the women come in, and they come in strong. In a musical about Founding Fathers, Miranda has placed a pair of vividly imagined female characters..."
posted by ChuraChura at 3:42 PM on September 25, 2015 [8 favorites]




Questlove on Hamilton. Also, holy shit, I didn't realize there's a remix album and mixtape still to come!
posted by kmz at 1:59 PM on September 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


If there's not a Meowilton album, I'll be very disappoint.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 5:27 PM on September 28, 2015


Lin-Manuel Miranda is one of the 2015 recipients of the MacArthur "Genius" Grant. (And so is Ta-Nehisi Coates!)
posted by yasaman at 10:16 PM on September 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


Aww, and he's planning on donating some of the money to the orphanage founded by Eliza! (very end of article)
posted by everybody had matching towels at 10:44 AM on September 29, 2015 [6 favorites]


Rolling Stone just put out a really great profile of LMM.
posted by kmz at 10:54 AM on September 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


I have tweeted about this but I have spent a full 24 hours listening to this album since it was released on Friday. I am utterly obsessed with it, and have gotten my teenage sister obsessed with it as well, and am now trying to figure out how I can justify $300 each tickets for both of us so I can take her to see it during her spring break. This is probably an unreasonable goal and I could just wait for it to be less expensive / more available / for me to have actual time and disposable income but gdi I want it so bad.

And as an older sister who relates fully with Angelica, I punched the air when Hamilton was all "oh finally someone who gets me" and Angelica was like "gtfo you idiot I'm here for my sister". YASSSS.

One of my favourite lyrical embellishments that doesn't get talked about enough is the many variations on the "Burr, sir" rhythm. Burr, sir / Sure, sir / Bursar / Verse, Burr / Worst, Burr etc. and it just keeps recurring, cropping up in unexpected places every 3-4 songs. Utterly delightful.
posted by Phire at 11:09 AM on September 29, 2015 [14 favorites]


Oh, also, can we now have a full musical about Eliza and Angelica post-Hamilton, plz?

Someone in one of the many thinkpieces I've been reading about this pointed out that the titular Hamilton could just as well be Eliza as Alexander, and now I am in love with this reading.
posted by Phire at 11:10 AM on September 29, 2015 [8 favorites]


justify $300 each tickets for both of us

I feel that, which is why we're going to a matinee....in January....on a Wednesday (though of course, being able to take a day off for that is it's own cost).
posted by everybody had matching towels at 11:25 AM on September 29, 2015


Well, I figure if I'm coming in for Toronto for a weekend or whatever just to see the musical, I want Orchestra seats. Even mezzanine seats for Wednesday matinees in March are $180+ though.
posted by Phire at 11:28 AM on September 29, 2015


Oh, for real. Our seats are orchestra, on the side, not obstructed view. Various message board searches tell me that our location is great, nothing gets missed. So that's something to consider. A NY friend of mine sent me some useful-sounding suggestions for securing inexpensive tickets closer to the show date. I am not the kind of person who can do that, but you might be? I'll memail you.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 11:52 AM on September 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


How Lin-Manuel Miranda Shapes History
posted by kmz at 3:02 PM on September 29, 2015


Ooh, nice, the McElroys have extracted LMM's Guestpert segment and put it on Youtube.
posted by kmz at 3:07 PM on September 29, 2015


I am slowly working my way through all the articles posted in this thread and there are some fantastic gems.

Rolling Stone:
Every night, without fail, one line in Hamilton gets such a big reaction that the music has to pause for two full bars: The French-born Marquis de Lafayette, played by rapper Daveed Diggs, says to Hamilton, "Immigrants — we get the job done!" In the age of Trump, the applause has only gotten louder. "I think of Trump the way I think of, like, pigeons," says Miranda, who can't bring himself to take the candidacy seriously. "It's just like a New York annoyance that's gone national, like, 'Oh, fuck, a pigeon shit on me.' 'Oh, God, a Trump building.' Pat Buchanan did a riff on 'The Mexicans are coming to kill us all' in fucking 1996. And before that it was Italians. It's an old song, and now Trump's singing it."
New York Times:
Chernow: Then he invited me to one of the first rehearsals at a small studio in the Garment District. I remember poking my head into the room and seeing eight actors standing in front of eight music stands, thinking, ‘‘Oh my goodness, they’re all black and Latino! What on earth is Lin-Manuel thinking?’’ I sat down with Thomas Kail, the director, and Jeffrey Seller, the producer, thinking to myself, ‘‘When this is over, I need to sit down and talk to Lin-Manuel alone. We’re talking about the founding fathers of the United States.’’ But after a minute or two I started to listen and forgot the color or ethnicity of these astonishingly talented young performers. Within five minutes, I became a militant on the subject of color-blind casting.
(I don't know what Chernow thought he'd accomplish here - was Miranda going to suddenly go "OH SHIT I FORGOT TO CAST WHITE PEOPLE"? - but I am very impressed at his willingness to own up to his initial reaction.)

New Yorker:
“I remember seeing ‘Les Miz’ when I was seven. I cried when Fantine died, fell asleep for a while, woke back up in time for Javert’s suicide—that is actually a great way to experience that show. When I saw ‘Cats,’ I remember being touched by the cats when they ran down the aisle. And then I saw ‘Phantom,’ and I was, like, ‘Oh, shit!’ Because it’s about an ugly songwriter who wants to impose his will on the world. I related to that.”
posted by Phire at 3:20 PM on September 29, 2015 [9 favorites]


Damn, everybody must have been saving their interviews for after the Macarthur news or something: another great one, this time from Rembert Browne on Grantland: Genius: A Conversation With ‘Hamilton’ Maestro Lin-Manuel Miranda
posted by kmz at 3:26 PM on September 29, 2015 [1 favorite]


Relistening to the MBMBAM Guestpert segment and there's great stuff in there like Lin dropping knowledge on super obscure musicals and his pre Broadway career as a substitute teacher and professional bar/bat mitzvah dancer.
posted by kmz at 4:16 PM on September 29, 2015


I'm past patiently waiting, I'm passionately smashing every expectation, every action's an act of creation #dead
posted by prefpara at 7:41 PM on September 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


i'm days late but i finally jumped in and OH MY GOD. i thought the praise was likely overblown or based on what i worried was a gimmick. but OH MY GOD. i'm just going to sit over here and digest if for a little while. i haven't even gotten through act 1 yet. i just keep repeating it from the beginning at different points. i'm sure i'll make it through soon...
posted by nadawi at 7:57 PM on September 30, 2015 [7 favorites]


nadawi: " i haven't even gotten through act 1 yet. i just keep repeating it from the beginning at different points. "

Oh, I know, it took me like three days to get to the ending because it's SO GOOD!

My 4-year-old is walking around the house singing to himself, "Alexander Hamilton ... his name is Alexander Hamilton ... Mommy, how many things hasn't he done?" "A million things." "Okay!" (And then when he wakes up in the morning and can't remember his whole name, "Mommy, what is the guy named Alexander in my song?" "Hamilton?" "Yes! Alexander Hamilton ... his name is Alexander Hamilton ...")
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:05 PM on September 30, 2015 [14 favorites]


I am inimitable, I am an original
I'm not falling behind or running late
I'm not standing still, I am lying in wait

Leslie Odom Jr is giving the performance of a lifetime as Burr. And Lin's not kidding when he's said he gave Burr the best songs.
posted by Mavri at 8:14 PM on September 30, 2015 [11 favorites]


The Toast has been having a fantastic celebration of Leslie Odom Jr as Aaron Burr! There's some serious knowledge dropped in the threads, including quotes from Aaron Burr's mother's diary (which can be read online here) and a portrait of one of Hamilton's surviving sons. (Dang.)
posted by harujion at 4:35 AM on October 1, 2015 [3 favorites]


Heh. Also from The Toast comments: Which Schuyler Sister Are You?

I got Peggy.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:51 AM on October 1, 2015


Me too.
posted by sciatrix at 8:42 AM on October 1, 2015


Like Lin-Manuel Miranda, I got Peggy, but as I said at The Toast, it's just as well. I'm not into a threesome with my husband or my sister's husband.
posted by jeather at 8:45 AM on October 1, 2015


So did Lin!

And the Toast has a great in-depth examination of Hamilton's relevance to current politics: Race, Immigration, and Hamilton: The Relevance of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s New Musical.
posted by kmz at 8:46 AM on October 1, 2015 [5 favorites]


From the article KMZ linked - "In fact, I’m convinced that every time you listen to the cast recording straight through, one of Trump’s Horcruxes is destroyed."

See? I'm just doing my part for America!
posted by ChuraChura at 9:10 AM on October 1, 2015 [6 favorites]


It was briefly mentioned in the Questlove interview, but confirmation:
So the show is done.
Cast album is out.
Now we begin planning The Hamilton Mixtape.
Remixes & Covers & Inspired bys.
FOR REAL.
GET READY.

How do you write like you're running out of time???
posted by kmz at 9:39 AM on October 1, 2015 [3 favorites]


There are enough influences and hat-tips that Miranda will be releasing his show notes in book form this March.


Can I preorder yet?
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 10:28 AM on October 1, 2015


I'm Eliza! Apparently margherita pizza makes me a total badass.
posted by tavella at 10:31 AM on October 1, 2015


Can I preorder yet?

Yep!
posted by kmz at 10:35 AM on October 1, 2015 [1 favorite]


Ooooooh I don't know why it didn't occur to me to look on The Toast but those pieces are excellent.

Also, this Leslie Odom Jr. parody of the Got Milk ad. Brill.
posted by Phire at 11:13 AM on October 1, 2015


I'd just like to put myself back in the narrative of this thread to say I'm Eliza too! (Although I'd kind of like to be Angelica solely for the line "'Cause I'm the oldest/And the wittiest/And the gossip in/New York City is/insidious").

Can I just say it warms my English professorial heart that the intense Act One ending showstopper is not about winning the War of Independence, but about how Hamilton wrote 51 essays? Essays! Yeah!
posted by ilana at 1:23 PM on October 1, 2015 [11 favorites]




Complete annotated lyrics

Well, there's my weekend.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:45 PM on October 2, 2015


Also a Peggy. Darn it, I wanted to be Angelica.

Anyway, the Toast comments are great stuff:

"My husband agreed to listen to it last night so he'd understand what all my mumble-raps and and HERCULES MULLIGAN facts were coming from, and when we got into the second half I started inching away from my computer and saying "we could listen to the rest of this at another time, it's cool, if you want." By "Quiet Uptown" I was in the fetal position at the foot of my bed, wiping away tears. "

I am seriously pondering tracking down the Chernow book (wasn't in my hometown store tonight, gonna have to leave town to find it) and flip through it to see if I can get through the writing and read the whole thing.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:38 PM on October 2, 2015


I am seriously pondering tracking down the Chernow book

Do it! I just got it a week ago and though it looks daunting but it reads like a novel. Immediately engrossing (plus it's been out long enough that my local used book store had like a dozen copies, got a brand new one for $6, wooooo).
posted by everybody had matching towels at 4:54 AM on October 3, 2015


Angelica, Eliza and Peggy.

The book is really interesting, especially if you need a brief intro to US history.
posted by jeather at 4:23 PM on October 3, 2015


I also started reading the Chernow, and it's a great read. Engrossing, very readable, and reads an awful lot like a novel while still having a strong grounding in history and primary source documents. Also, reading it makes me newly impressed with the musical's historical accuracy.
posted by yasaman at 5:13 PM on October 3, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm glad I'm not the only one going around screaming, THATS RIGHT, HERCULES MULLIGAN!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 3:24 PM on October 4, 2015 [6 favorites]


I got the book at the library today! (Finally, the one spot in town that has it.)
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:05 PM on October 4, 2015




Ha, the HTML title of the article still reflects its presumed pre-corrections version of the headline: "will be filmed" rather than "wants to".
posted by kmz at 7:34 AM on October 5, 2015


We already know Hamilton is more densely packed than other musicals; 538 has quantified it.
posted by kmz at 1:54 PM on October 5, 2015 [4 favorites]




So my obsessive listening to this album has led to finally read up on that Hamilton gay rumor I kept hearing about and oh god, the revolutionary war, so gay so very very gay
posted by The Whelk at 10:34 AM on October 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


"I think your pants look hot.
Laurens, I like you a lot."
posted by ChuraChura at 11:06 AM on October 6, 2015


Hamilton was probably bi, though.
posted by jeather at 11:11 AM on October 6, 2015


I mean, yes, I would usually get all BISEXUAL ERASURE about this, but Whelk's Twitter feed has been such a glorious treasure trove of Gay Hamilton Truther goodness the last couple of days that I can't complain.

Someone go write If Alexander Hamilton Were Your Secret Queer Revolutionary War Boyfriend for The Toast now, please.
posted by Stacey at 11:17 AM on October 6, 2015 [6 favorites]


the "be sure to tell women about my huge dick" part is pretty overt. Between that and Stubens and L'Effant it seems you can't spell America without GAY CABAL.

We must return to the values of our founding fathers and go live with two our aide-de-camps.
posted by The Whelk at 11:18 AM on October 6, 2015


I take the middle stance of "we can't project modern sexual identity into a past where no such frameworks exist but they did it. The sex."
posted by The Whelk at 11:19 AM on October 6, 2015 [8 favorites]


I can't believe that what amounts to the Revolutionary War Founding Fathers fandom is my newest fandom. I also can't believe that I'm now somehow in a fandom that is even more patriotic than Captain America fandom. But I guess that's happening.
posted by yasaman at 12:41 PM on October 6, 2015 [13 favorites]


yasaman: "I can't believe that what amounts to the Revolutionary War Founding Fathers fandom is my newest fandom."

Wait until my pedicurist finds out about this!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 1:10 PM on October 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


yasaman yasaman yasaman have you seen 1776? Because omg.
posted by sciatrix at 1:58 PM on October 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


No I haven't, actually! Thus far my only exposure to 1776 has been gifsets on tumblr on the 4th of July. There's a filmed version of that musical, right? I should watch that as I descend further into Founding Fathers fandom hell, probably.
posted by yasaman at 2:10 PM on October 6, 2015


Yes. Yes you should. It's maybe not as innovative a musical as Hamilton but it's also meticulously researched and hilarious. I defy you not to watch the opening song (which Hamilton totally references) and not fall in love a little.
posted by sciatrix at 2:30 PM on October 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I still want to know exactly what the Ham is meaning by this one: "Let me tell you, that I intend to restore the empire of Hymen and that Cupid is to be his prime Minister." Say whaaaat?
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:14 PM on October 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Hymen was a god of marriage ceremonies.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:24 PM on October 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


The subtext of some of those letters is "Look, I don't love her like I love you, but I am Really Good At Sex and I'm gonna have so many babies, oh yeah just sit there thinking about how good at sex I am and how you're not getting any. My wife, who I don't love like you but is still hot in her way, is like going to get so much of my super rad sexing you have no idea."
posted by The Whelk at 10:30 PM on October 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


The Whelk, I'd looooove to see LMM come up with a rap about that exact sentence you just said.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:39 PM on October 6, 2015


he's so defensive! like "LOOK I LIKE YOU AND YOU NOT LIKING ME BACK IS REALLY MEAN P.S CAN WE BONE?"
posted by The Whelk at 10:41 PM on October 6, 2015 [1 favorite]




Oooh, Andrew Rannells is replacing Jonathan Groff as King George for a month while Groff is off filming Looking.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 10:25 AM on October 8, 2015 [2 favorites]


Yes!!! My boyfriend hates musicals, and I have been listening to Hamilton nonstop, but he also loves Girls and thinks that "I Believe" is the best song. Now that Elijah is in Hamilton, I will have FREE REIGN over the car radio/bluetooth settings.
posted by ChuraChura at 11:33 AM on October 8, 2015 [2 favorites]


Dang... I was really hoping for Groffsauce when I see the show in November. Oh well, I'm sure Rannells will be great as well. And I mean, I'm still seeing goddamn Hamilton.
posted by kmz at 12:02 PM on October 8, 2015


I am so goddamn in love with this thing that I can't stand it. I've been listening to it pretty much non-stop for several days, and it really is one of the couple of greatest musicals ever (and I've heard a hell of a lot of them at my advanced age). It really rewards compulsive repeated listening since there are so many layers of musical and lyrical complexity and Easter eggs. Plus Jonathan Groff [smoochies]. At the moment, the line that is JUST SLAYING ME:

"Don't modulate the key then not debate with me"

Fucking brilliant, as is the whole contrapuntal "Farmer Refuted." But there are approximately 400 lines that just slay me, in constant rotation. I didn't see this link above but probably missed it: the complete annotated libretto on Genius, including notes on all the musical, lyrical, and historical references, linked supporting materials, etc.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:22 AM on October 10, 2015 [1 favorite]


My 4-year-old is walking around the house singing to himself, "Alexander Hamilton ... his name is Alexander Hamilton ... Mommy, how many things hasn't he done?" "A million things." "Okay!" (And then when he wakes up in the morning and can't remember his whole name, "Mommy, what is the guy named Alexander in my song?" "Hamilton?" "Yes! Alexander Hamilton ... his name is Alexander Hamilton ...")

Oh god, this is seriously moving -- 20 or 40 years from now, this is going to be one of his earliest memories of childhood.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:43 AM on October 10, 2015 [4 favorites]


No I haven't, actually! Thus far my only exposure to 1776 has been gifsets on tumblr on the 4th of July. There's a filmed version of that musical, right? I should watch that as I descend further into Founding Fathers fandom hell, probably.

1776 is fucking great, although not nearly as great as Hamilton, and I say this as a person who watches 1776 every July 4. Couple of highlights: the radiant Blythe Danner (Betty Buckley shone like a klieg light in the play); debating the national bird. Oh and my god you have to see John Cullum's performance to believe it.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:39 PM on October 10, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yesterday's Ham4Ham featured a fab "Guns and Ships" contest with Daveed Diggs plus audience participation!
posted by FelliniBlank at 3:03 PM on October 11, 2015 [2 favorites]


Guys, I finally did it: I got my three-year old to run around the house yelling, HAMILTON!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:04 AM on October 12, 2015 [3 favorites]


Hey, ThePinkSuperhero, while you're here: I'm hoping to get to NYC this winter to see the show, but in the meantime, can you provide a little word-picture of the GroffDancing?
posted by FelliniBlank at 10:20 AM on October 12, 2015


It's exactly one month until Hamilton for me. I'm practically jumping out of my skin in anticipation.
posted by kmz at 10:28 AM on October 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


One of these days, I will get to this part and not tear up a bit:

Oh, am I talkin’ too loud?
Sometimes I get over excited, shoot off at the mouth
I never had a group of friends before
I promise that I’ll make y’all proud


But not today. I should probably make that my twitter bio.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:00 AM on October 12, 2015 [3 favorites]


I manage to hold off the teariness until "Satisfied" but then "Dear Theodosia" really accelerates the unraveling until the utter devastation of "It's Quiet Uptown." After which I'm usually only just regaining my composure when it's dismantled again the second the [spoiler] comes up in "Who Lives, Who Dies." I'm pretty much never going to be able to count in French again without needing a hankie and a margarita.
posted by FelliniBlank at 11:48 AM on October 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


I will usually race through the first half but my listening gets slower...and slower...mostly so I can avoid sobbing to It's Quiet Uptown. That song is just designed to destroy you.

(Also I'm afraid to listen past, like, Cabinet Battle #2 while driving, lest I crash because I haven't been able to bawl and drive since I was a lovelorn highschooler.)
posted by kalimac at 11:53 AM on October 12, 2015 [3 favorites]


Hey, ThePinkSuperhero, while you're here: I'm hoping to get to NYC this winter to see the show, but in the meantime, can you provide a little word-picture of the GroffDancing?

There's no dancing during any of his songs, but he does drop in and get a little jiggy during The Reynolds Pamphlet. I'll be honest, I found the drop-in by King George during that song unnecessary (he already had 3 songs, and the joke works best as a 3 instead of 4, IMO), but it was still funny and the audience really ate it up.

In other news, guess who is dressing up as Alexander Hamilton for Halloween? And who is also dressing up her baby George as King George? Are you done guessing? IT'S MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:33 PM on October 12, 2015 [7 favorites]


There's no dancing during any of his songs, but he does drop in and get a little jiggy during The Reynolds Pamphlet.

Thanks! The First Listen reviewer said, "Jonathan Groff was so absurd he made Leslie Odom Jr., playing Aaron Burr, break with a particularly well-executed shoulder shimmy. . . . When you listen to Groff sing those lines, just trust he murdered the dance floor," so it must've been in the pamphlet bit.
posted by FelliniBlank at 12:58 PM on October 12, 2015


In other news, guess who is dressing up as Alexander Hamilton for Halloween? And who is also dressing up her baby George as King George? Are you done guessing? IT'S MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.


Whatever the future perfect tense version of "Pics or it didn't happen" is, that.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:03 PM on October 12, 2015 [2 favorites]


I will do my best. The baby is not going to take kindly to the outfit, we will have to click fast.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:58 PM on October 12, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's never too early to learn you have to suffer for art.
posted by FelliniBlank at 3:12 PM on October 12, 2015


Damn, I've been working on my costume for over a month and it's too late to dress in Hamilton-wear. Uh, whatever that is for the ladies. Pretty sure my Ren Faire outfit may not count?
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:48 PM on October 12, 2015


mostly so I can avoid sobbing to It's Quiet Uptown. That song is just designed to destroy you.

I recently had the pleasure of introducing my sister to Hamilton on a long drive together, but I had to skip through all the Philip-related songs because if they make me cry, they will make her drive into a ditch. She is very sensitive.

I am to Hamilton as she is to Madison, though, so she LOVED the politics, especially the cabinet meetings, but felt that there should have been much more about the Federalist Papers. Her rants about the importance of James Madison made the whole ride very entertaining.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 1:32 PM on October 13, 2015 [5 favorites]


Holy shit! (Lin's releasing demos on his Twitter/Soundcloud to celebrate getting to 96,000 followers.)

And if you don't know why 96k is a significant number, you really need to listen to In The Heights.
posted by kmz at 9:07 AM on October 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I thought this link had come from here, but I don't see it. Cut from the Broadway version, a brief reprise of Dear Theodosia.

Not safe for work if you don't want to cry at work.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:06 AM on October 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


Just got tickets for the show in January. I can't wait. I am now torn between listening to the whole soundtrack a lot and getting familiar with the music before the show, or going in mostly fresh. When this was first posted I listened to a few of the songs, but not everything. Right now I am leaning towards keeping the experience fresh. For anyone who has seen the show, what do you think?
posted by bove at 11:22 AM on October 15, 2015




some of the hamilton cast stopped by bet to participate in the cypher.
posted by nadawi at 3:52 PM on October 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


When this was first posted I listened to a few of the songs, but not everything. Right now I am leaning towards keeping the experience fresh. For anyone who has seen the show, what do you think?

This is a hard question because seeing it cold was such an incredible experience. But, if you think you'll only see it once, I think you should listen to the cast album. It is so dense and goes by so fast. I never felt that I didn't understand what was happening, and I understood most of the lyrics, but I appreciate it more now that I know the music better. Especially Act 2.
posted by Mavri at 7:36 AM on October 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


I went in fresh, I was glad I didn't have any other option- like Mavri said, it's an incredible experience. I might have liked to have read the Hamilton biography the show was based on before I saw it, just to have the historical background (there are artistic liberties taken, but mostly the show is true to the book).
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:53 AM on October 16, 2015


I finally took the Which Schuyler Sister Are You? Quiz and I got Eliza, and these results are much like the Hamilton musical in that I had no idea how badly I wanted it until I got it.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 9:23 AM on October 16, 2015 [4 favorites]


Ugh, I got Peggy! I am totally Angelica!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:44 PM on October 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


I got Peggy too, which is accurate in my case, but I think the quiz is set up to give out a highly disproportionate amount of Peggys to non-Peggy people just so she gets a little attention for a change.
posted by FelliniBlank at 12:51 PM on October 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


I am Eliza. Whee! Maybe it was the fact that I've listened to "Burn" approximately twelve times today that did it.

Twelve times so far, it's only 5:20.
posted by Stacey at 2:20 PM on October 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


I apparently have a major streak of frightening masochism because I got on this thing yesterday where I was compelled to listen to "It's Quiet Uptown" approximately 10 times, which probably shaved several years off my life. What the hell?
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:28 PM on October 16, 2015 [5 favorites]


I can't do that because I get too emotionally compromised by the way Hamilton sings "I know who I married." Like, Jesus Christ, how am I supposed to get anything done while you're doing that, can we have a civilization?
posted by Stacey at 2:36 PM on October 16, 2015 [4 favorites]


Yeah, I basically start sobbing anytime I hear those four piano notes anywhere in the score now.
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:40 PM on October 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


In cheerier news, more Hamiltunes puppetry.
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:06 PM on October 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


update: hamilton is still fantastic and i wish i had a recording of the actual show to watch or the money to actually make it to broadway to see it myself
posted by flatluigi at 9:21 PM on October 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


My CD set came finally over the weekend (finally w/r/t how long it took to release the CDs after the MP3s, not w/r/t amazon shipping, they were quite quick) and now I can listen to it non-stop in the car! My 4-year-old is very excited. During Aaron Burr, Sir, during school drop-off this morning he shouted, "MOMMY, 1776 IS MY FAVORITE YEAR!"
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:10 AM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


For anyone else of the fanfiction-reading persuasion, we've probably got a lot of fic to look forward to come Christmas! After only a couple of days of sign ups, Hamilton has the most requests and the second most amount of offers in the annual Yuletide small fandom fan fiction gift exchange. (I am one of those requests.)
posted by yasaman at 10:26 AM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


If this means that I'll finally get my imagined "When Peggy Schuyler Met Hercules Mulligan" story without even asking for it, it will be truly a holiday season to remember.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:02 AM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Since my chances of seeing this show during its current incarnation are never ever ever in a billion years gonna happen, I am hoping that sometime somebody does one of those Fandom Event things where someone films Hamilton and we can all go watch it in our local movie theaters.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:48 PM on October 19, 2015


Miranda has said he wants to get a filmed performance of the whole original (B'way) cast this year while they're all still together, and he's all about the democratization of the theater experience what with the daily lotteries and school trips, etc. So I wouldn't be at all surprised if they work out a way to DVD the motherfucker.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:44 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


And about fanfic, we definitely need to put the historically accurate Hamilton/Laurens back into the narrative.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:45 PM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Miranda hates bootlegs but is also smart enough to know they're inevitable and extremely tempting for people who can't see the show. I hope he has it filmed partly just to undercut the bootleg market.
posted by Mavri at 6:09 AM on October 20, 2015


LMM: The Early Years.
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:35 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]




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