It’s strange to see Lin-Manuel Miranda in costume as Alexander Hamilton after more than two years away from the role. It’s even stranger to hear him singing, in character, in the style of a classic Broadway show tune instead of Hamilton’s usual hip-hop. For November’s #Hamildrop bonus release, Miranda released a brand new song, “Cheering for Me Now.” It was composed by John Kander, half of the songwriting duo Kander & Ebb, who gave us Cabaret, Chicago, and “New York, New York.”
There’s an homage to the latter in “Cheering for Me Now,” which sees Hamilton marvel at a parade held in 1788 to celebrate his home state’s ratification of the U.S. constitution.
Because the music video uses shots of modern New York City, the song also reads as Hamilton taking in his status as a pop culture phenomenon far into the future: “Today it’s my city/ Tomorrow who knows/ Today we’re a country/ Let’s see how it goes.” Mostly, though, it’s an appreciation of Miranda’s hometown, with sentiments as true in 2018 as they would have been in the 18th century.
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