I’m just going to put it out there: Y’all don’t know nothin’ about movie soundtracks. I can’t remember the last movie I went to where I came out of the theater wanting to go straight to the record store to buy the soundtrack. In fact, the last time I felt that way, there were still record stores to go to. I’m talking about movies where the soundtrack and the lyrics to the soundtrack actually had something to do with the movie – not movies where record companies made deals so that their artists’ songs would be played throughout the movie. But y’all don’t know what I’m talking about.
I’m talking about movie soundtracks that were sometimes more popular than the movie – that if you didn’t have them in your record collection, your friends would talk about you like you were crazy. The Academy Award-winning theme from “Shaft” made people want to go see the movie. And if you saw the movie first, you knew the music was something special.
The genius of a brilliant soundtrack album – yes, I said “album” – is that it often outlives the popularity of the movie. Thirty-something years later, the songs still sound as fresh as they did back then, even though the movie itself is pretty dated.
Curtis Mayfield struck gold when he created the soundtrack for the movie “SuperFly.” If you listened to the soundtrack and opened up the cover and looked at all the pictures, you felt like you had been to see the movie. The soundtrack wasn’t just a bunch of good songs; it actually told a story. I know plenty of people who never saw the movie niho know the entire soundtrack, including the lyrics to “Pusher Man,” which were very controversial back in the 70s: “I’m your mama/I’m your daddy/I’m that n***a in the alley/I’m your pusher man.” Oh, I know that’s pretty mild by today’s standards. If you watched the BET Awards and heard all those bleeps, just know that your kids know the real words and sing them when you aren’t around.
“Claudine” was another great soundtrack album. Once you heard Gladys Knight and the Pips sing “On and On,” you couldn’t get out of your head. The movie “Sparkle” wasn’t the biggest box office success in the world, but Aretha Franklin’s soundtrack from the movie (also written by Curtis Mayfield) is still a classic. “Giving Him Something He Can Feel” has been redone by EnVogue, and “Look into Your Heart” was redone by Whitney Houston, and they were hits all over again!
For a period in the 70s, it seemed like every black film had at least one lasting hit. “The Mack” brought us “Brother’s Gonna Work it Out” by Willie Hutch; Curtis Mayfield did it again on “Let’s Do it Again” with the title hit from the Staple Singers. Cooley High’s “How Can I Say Goodbye to Yesterday,” still gives you goose bumps even if you haven’t seen the movie in 20 years.
For me, the last great movie soundtrack was from “The Five Heartbeats.” “A Heart is a House for Love” is a cut that was crucial to the movie itself and went on to be a big commercial hit.
You can call me, text me and tweet me about “Jason’s Lyric,” “New Jack City,” “Beverly Hills Cop” and “Boomerang” — I know the hits. But I will still argue that a great soundtrack is more than a list of songs you heard in the movie that are also available on CD. A great soundtrack is defined by how the music in the movie moved you – and whether the song is forever connected to the film and the film forever connected to the song.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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