Hip hop & AOL: Lin-Manuel Miranda shares his influences for Hamilton's 'My Shot'

The entire Rotten Tomatoes interview (above) with Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda is terrific and insightful. But I was especially struck by the part where he shares the songwriting process for "My Shot." His influences were hip hop and the AOL dialup chime:

"I'm grabbing from the influences and paying homage to those influences."

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WATCH: New 'Hamilton' movie trailer released, Disney film premieres July 3

Disney has just released a first look trailer for the new 'Hamilton' film. Read the rest

Bidding opens for the right to bring an original cast video of Hamilton to screens

When Lin-Manuel Miranda left the cast of Hamilton in 2016, the production created an archival video of the original cast performance, saying that he had "no idea" what they'd do with the footage, "Throwing it in a vault at Gringotts for a bit probly." Read the rest

New 'Hamilton' track about Benjamin F*cking Franklin released, sung by The Decemberists

Here's an F-bomb-filled anthem about Benjamin Franklin that never made it into Lin-Manuel Miranda's hit musical, Hamilton. It's a humorous tune called "Benjamin Franklin's Song" and it's sung by The Decemberists.

The band shares the song's story:

HAMILTON, as you probably know, is an American musical theater production written by a guy named Lin-Manuel Miranda. Lots of people have seen it, lots of people are continuing to see it, lots of people have raved about it. We saw a production of it in New York last year and we can tell you: it’s very very good. And important. And transformative to our countrys current milieu. Etc.

Well, it happens that Mr. Miranda reached out to our own Colin Meloy to put music to a set of lyrics that had been written for HAMILTON but had never been used: a first-person introduction to one of the US’s founding fathers, Mr. Benjamin Franklin. Lin said that he’d wanted to include Franklin as a character in the show initially, but it just never quite worked something about not wanting to remove the audience more than once from the action taking place in our nascent United States. Funnily enough, he said he’d imagined Franklin singing in a sort of Decemberist-y way, whatever that means.

FAST FORWARD TO 2016: Lin passed on the lyrics to Colin, who was very much up to the task, and a new song was born: BEN FRANKLIN’S SONG, to be exact. We really like it. It’s very swear-y, but there’s a clean version too.

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Lin-Manuel Miranda's childhood home movies show him busting out dance moves

On The Late Late Show with James Corden, Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda said that, while on a recent vacation, he digitized all the VHS home movies he made in his childhood. Read the rest

A powerful, political Hamilton mixtape music video and the #Ham4All challenge

The 2016 Hamilton mixtape invited musicians to remix songs from the musical’s cast recording and now one of the tracks has its own music video. “Immigrants (We Get The Job Done)” is performed by K’naan, Residente, Riz MC (a.k.a. Rogue One’s Riz Ahmed), and Snow Tha Product. And the video blends the song’s powerful pro-immigrant message with equally evocative visuals.

The video is part of the #Ham4All challenge, which sprung up around a Prizeo competition Lin-Manuel Miranda is running to raise money for the Immigrants: We Get the Job Done Coalition. For a $10 donation, fans can be entered to win VIP tickets to the opening night of Hamilton in Los Angeles. And Miranda is also encouraging entrants to upload a video of themselves singing a portion of the Hamilton cast recording and then challenge their friends to do the same.

Since then a whole bunch of celebrities have gotten in on the action too. For instance, young Beguiled actors Emma Howard, Oona Laurence, Angourie Rice, and Addison Riecke uploaded an adorable “Schuyler Sisters” music video featuring cameos from Nicole Kidman, Colin Farrell, Kirsten Dunst, and Elle Fanning.

To see more videos from celebrities and non-celebrities alike, just search the #Ham4All hashtag on Twitter. You can enter the contest/make a donation via Prizeo.

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