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Andy Sullivan: Against the Grain


I had no idea what I was going to write about this week until about 12:51 Tuesday afternoon.  That morning while on the treadmill, I was listening to the Baby Driver soundtrack.  As many times as I had listened to that album, I realized quickly that this had become my favorite and, in my opinion, best movie soundtrack since Forrest Gump in 1994.  Find Baby Driver on Amazon.  You won’t be disappointed.  Now, for a little soundtrack deep dive.

With classics like “Hound Dog” by Elvis and “Rebel Rouser” by Duane Eddy, and so many other great ‘60’s and ‘70’s hit singles, the Forest Gump soundtrack just blows you away with hit after hit.  And much like any great movie soundtrack, you can trace each song to the scene during which it plays.  Gary S. Dalkin, in his review of the soundtrack for said “Like American Graffiti(1973), this is one of the great pop soundtracks, happily at home in just about any music collection”.

Forrest Gump was 24 years ago this July.  That in itself is a mind-blowing fact.  What do I constitute a great soundtrack or any kind of album? If you don’t skip a song because you like them all, that’s your signal of a great soundtrack.  I was kid of in and out on movie soundtracks.  In fact, before Gump, my two favorites were Cocktail and Top Gun.  Those two will never be beat.  I’d say those were(again, my opinion) the greatest soundtracks of the ‘80’s. 

Wait a minute! I forgot the soundtrack to the movie Ray.  2004 was the year.  Jamie Foxx played the late Ray Charles better then anybody else could.  The soundtrack was filled with Ray Charles classics: “What I’d Say”, “I Got A Woman”, “Drown In My Own Tears” and more.  Of course I own this soundtrack as well.  Again, what made this soundtrack so great was that nobody tried to remake these songs.  We got the genuine article and it was glorious!

July 29, 1988, Cocktail was released.  What a movie! Okay, so it wasn’t exactly a cinematic masterpiece.  Stuff I like isn’t exactly a critical hit, at least most of the time.  This was back when most albums only had 10 tracks but man was this stacked! “Wild Again” by Starship, “Powerful Stuff” by Fabulous Thunderbirds”, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” by Bobby McFerrin, “Kokomo” by Beach Boys(who coincidentally have another of their classics on Baby Driver), a remake of Buddy Holly’s “Rave On” by John Mellencamp, Ry Cooder’s remake of Elvis’ “All Shook Up”, and “Tutti Frutti” by Little Richard rounded out, in my opinion, a very solid soundtrack.  And being 10 songs, it takes under an hour to listen to.  That’s a flight from Nashville to Orlando.  Good times.

Throw in the Top Gun soundtrack and that’s a good time.  If you’re looking for the best-selling movie soundtrack of all time, that’d be The Bodyguard with over 37 million sold worldwide, including 17 million copes shipped in the U.S. alone.  Pretty cool stats for a music buff like me!


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