Beyond ‘Hamilton,’ for Better and for Worse – New York Times
By and large, the singers on “The Hamilton Mixtape” treat Mr. Miranda’s material reverently, as interpreters handling a precious jewel: Ms. Clarkson on “It’s Quiet Uptown,” Ms. Keys on “That Would Be Enough.” Others go above and beyond: John Legend gives “History Has Its Eyes on You” a bolt of 1960s soul dignity, shaving it down to an urgent piano arrangement. Andra Day adds swing and sass to “Burn,” and Usher gives “Wait for It” a sensuality the original lacked (and maybe wasn’t suited for, though that’s no obstacle).
The savviest moment here is “Helpless,” which revives the playful singer-rapper chemistry between Ashanti and Ja Rule, and draws a direct parallel between Mr. Miranda’s songwriting and real-world pop. Like the best parts of this collection, this tale of puppy love suggests that the ideas Mr. Miranda seeks to spread have always found a welcoming home in pop music.