NEW ALBUM: LIN-MANUEL | IN THE HEIGHTS (ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK)
Lin-Manuel Miranda’s joyous celebration of the Washington Heights neighbourhood, “In The Heights,” has finally arrived via the soundtrack that soars just as high even without the benefit of interstitial dialogue and sumptuous visuals. Adapted from the Broadway musical, the story centers on a bodega owner, Usnavi (Anthony Ramos), who discovers his mom-and-pop stop-and-shop has sold a winning lottery ticket. Melissa Barrera, Leslie Grace, Corey Hawkins, Jimmy Smits and Olga Merediz make up the cast. While the original cast recording exists featuring Miranda in the lead role, Atlantic Records’ soundtrack showcases the remarkable talents of this new cast singing the old favourites, along with a newly written closing song, “Home All Summer.” Diehards of the musical will immediately notice the shifts of songs… and, lamentably for some, the inevitable cuts. Gone are “Sunrise,” sung by Nina and Benny after spending a night together, and “Hundreds of Stories,” a duet between Usnavi and Abuela Claudia as they sing about what they’ll do with them the lottery money. Also missing is “Atención,” a song that Kevin sings, announcing Abuela Claudia’s passing. And MIA is Nina’s mother, Camila Rosario, which changes the dynamics between college student Nina, her father and their story.