Soundtrack sounds
SOUNDS FAMILIAR - Baby A. Gil (The Philippine Star) - February 6, 2013 - 12:00am

Seemed like nothing new. It was just another album from Glee. And then, it is made up of songs from Grease. Nothing new again. Grease started out as a hit Broadway musical about high school life in early ’60s America that became an iconic motion picture starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. 

So why bother to listen? Maybe because it might be relaxing because Grease by Glee now titled Glease will be about nice, familiar sounds that I will not have to really listen to or analyze. But what do you know! Glee The Music Presents Glease turned out to be lots of fun.

Grease by Warren Casey and Jim Jacobs is a very good rock and roll musical with superbly witty songs that tackles everything from love to dropping out of school to teen pregnancy and other themes. Think Summer Nights, Look At Me I’m Sandra Dee and Greased Lightning. 

New additions in the movie soundtrack, Hopelessly Devoted To You, You’re The One That I Want by John Farrar made Grease even more commercial. To this day, I know of people who still listen to the albums. Radio stations play the songs and TV shows often field young artists to do a Summer Nights production number.

Then, there is the cast of Glee. I have heard them so many times that I have forgotten how good they are. I got a jolt hearing the intro to Hopelessly Devoted To You and then, hearing Blaine (Darren Criss) instead of Olivia, but he is very good. So is everybody else. Grease could not have made a better introduction to today’s generation than this album.

Now it would have been nice if there had been more of Finn (Corey Monteith) and Rachel (Lea Michele) they only do one song, You’re The One That I Want. But the strong voices and energetic performances by everyone else make for an enjoyable album. 

Pay close attention to There Are Worse Things I Could Do. Singing with Santana (Naya Rivera) is the lovely Kate Hudson who is not Goldie Hawn’s daughter for nothing. I remember her beautiful presence and her singing in the movie Nine.  I hope she returns to more Glee episodes and I also hope to see her in other musicals soon.

Still on movie music: Adele drew first blood in the year’s awards derby with her Skyfall from the James Bond flick of the same title. She was up against For You from Act of Valor by Keith Urban; Safe And Sound from Hunger Games by Taylor Swift featuring Civil Wars; Suddenly from Les Miserables by Hugh Jackman; and Stand Up Guys from Not Running Anymore by Jon Bon Jovi.

Adele is not in the running in the Best Song Written for Visual Media category in next week’s Grammy Awards. Skyfall came out in October, while the Grammy nominations close annually on Sept. 30. Taylor’s Safe And Sound is up for the award though in competition with Abraham’s Daughter also from Hunger Games by Arcade Fire; Learn Me Right from Brave by Birdy and Mumford & Son; Let Me Be A Star from the TV series Smash by Katherine McPhee and Megan Hilty; and Man Or Muppet from The Muppets by Jason Siegel and Walter.

Adele returns to the arena at the Academy Awards later this month. If her luck keeps up, she might just go home with her first Oscar. If not, then the much-coveted statuette went to any of the other nominees:  Before My Time from Chasing Ice by Scarlett and Joshua Bell; Suddenly, Jackman’s song from Les Miz; Pi’s Lullaby by Bombay Jayshee from Life of Pi; and Everybody Needs A Friend by Norah Jones from Ted.

Speaking of Les Miserables. I have been listening to the motion picture soundtrack CD. It is made up only of excerpts and certainly suffers in comparison to the original West End cast recording. I really was looking forward to hearing the entire Do You Hear The People Sing in the album, it is after all the song of Les Miz. Still, the album is quite charming in its own way. 

Anne Hathaway’s I Dreamed A Dream is just as affecting without the visuals. It was a sentimental moment hearing the voice of Colm Wilkinson, the original Jean Valjean as the Archbishop. Samantha Barks as Eponine, should record a solo album. Eddie Redmayne is better heard than seen. And surprises of surprises, Russell Crowe’s singing grows on you or maybe I really just love the song Stars. But check him out anyway.

Come to think of it, has Glee ever done a Les Miz episode?

ACADEMY AWARDS ACT OF VALOR ADELE ANNE HATHAWAY ARCADE FIRE HOPELESSLY DEVOTED TO YOU HUNGER GAMES LES MIZ ONE THAT I WANT SAFE AND SOUND
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