“Alexander Hamilton” by Original Broadway Cast of Hamilton
This song, as well as the play it is featured on, is based on the life of Alexander Hamilton. Alexander Hamilton was an 18th century scholar and politician who was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. And more specifically, most of the lyrics of the track are based on his childhood as expounded from the perspective of other historical characters who are part of the play. These characters include Aaron Burr, James Madison and even George Washington himself.
Now Alexander Hamilton is in fact one of the most-famous figures in American history. As such, every aspect of his life has been meticulously detailed by historians throughout the centuries. And this song, despite being presented largely in the form of a braggadocious rap, is in fact based on such details. Therefore expounding on its entire lyrical backdrop can constitute a small book in and of itself.
But ultimately, the idea being put forth is this. Hamilton was born into a challenging background. Indeed as the very first line of the song suggests, he was “a bast**d, orphan, son of a whore”. Yet by the time all was said and done, as aforementioned he grew up to be a great man. And the overall implication of the lyrics is that his rise to greatness was due to Alexander possessing an unrelenting work ethic.
Facts about “Alexander Hamilton”
This song, both lyrically and musically, was written by Lin-Manuel Miranda. This is the same writer who penned the “Hamilton” musical. This tune is a part of said musical, in fact serving as its opening number.
The officially release date of this song is 25 September 2015. That is the same day in which the “Hamilton” album, which was handled by Atlantic Records, came out. However, it has been noted that the song existed even earlier than that. For instance, Miranda is on record of having performed the tune at the White House itself, in front of the President (Obama) and First Lady, back in 2009.
A year after its official release, “Alexander Hamilton” made history as the first performance which was streamed live from Broadway during the Grammys.
And the song itself has been noted for mixing elements of hip-hop music with those more akin to a Broadway musical and has been said to have influenced the latter genre altogether.
As of 200, “Alexander Hamilton” had sold more than a million units in America only. It has therefore been certified Platinum by the RIAA.
The opening line referring to Alexander Hamilton as a “bast**d”amongst other things, is of course quite-derogatory, especially for a respected historical figure. But Miranda went on to explain those sentiments reflected are based on those once expressed by John Adams. Adams was the second President of the United States and a contemporary of Alexander Hamilton. And as those statements suggest, these two historical figures did in fact have beef.
What genre of music is “Alexander Hamilton”?
It belongs into the hip hop genre as well as the show tune genre.