Beyond ‘Hamilton,’ for Better and for Worse – New York Times

 In Entertainment

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).

Photo

From left, Daveed Diggs, who was in the original cast of “Hamilton,” with Marcus Scribner, Marsai Martin and Miles Brown on the ABC sitcom “Black-ish.”

Credit
Eric McCandless/ABC

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.

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