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For Colored Girls Soundtrack

For Colored Girls Soundtrack Song List - Listen & Download
Let not the political correctness, nor the worthiness, nor the collection of respectable names in the cast, nor the unstoppable onslaught of earnestness persuade you, dear people, that the For Colored Girls soundtrack is a thing of soul, a thing of spirit, a force for good. Be not swayed by the shameless Oscar chasing, nor the legitimately prestigious source material (the film is based on Ntozake Shange’s Tony nominated play). For, good people, the For Colored Girls soundtrack is nothing more than a bunch of bland cliché-driven tracks from an array of female soul singers, some skilled, some mediocre, none hitting the necessary heights, few avoiding drivelling cliché.

For a film which deals with race relations and feminine identity with a soul and rhythm & blues backing, there is woefully little flash and anger, miniscule inspiration, Gladys Knight where you might want Aretha. Janelle Monae live is a thing to behold, in no small part due to her amazing band, but the track she’s contributed here is a tepid bucket of earnestness, and frankly the Archandroid mastermind should have a good long think about her output after contributing such an instantly forgettable number.

There is, admittedly, one great track here – a reworking of Nina Simone’s Four Women, in which the incomparable Nina (a woman of such presence, such power, that she once terrified an awestruck Nick Cave, himself a notoriously imposing figure, when they appeared on the same bill) has teamed up with her daughter, plus Laura Izibor and Ledisi. But shamefully, shamefully, this is followed by a track from one of Simon Cowell’s hatebreed, Leona Lewis. Lewis is one of Cowell’s many doom-bringers, spewing heartless production-line balladry onto us from their palatial balconies, full of saccharine nothingness, created by others, hired hack singers mouthing voicelessly the mock-poetry of hired hack writers to carbon-copy melodies fused together by hired hack musicians, their balconies earned by selling their souls to the Cowell machine, their new found luxury and day-to-day comfort won at our expense, and the voiceless majorities go along with it, encourage it, tired from their jobs and families and sadnesses and gut-punches they wave it in, fund it, scatter the remains of their paltry wages at the feet of the Cowell breed, applaud, worn out and furious and confused and desperate they cheer and sing along, but not the filmmakers. Dear God not the filmmakers. Take them off your soundtracks, filmmakers. Not the credulous ones, dear Christ, not the creators. Not you as well. Not you as well, Tyler Perry. Hang your head in shame, Tyler Perry. Hawking your co-opted wares to the hungry masses, and taking their monies and returning to your luxurious carpets and fresh linens and comfy chairs. Endorsing the Simon Cowell Musical Culture R*ping Machine, putting your name on it, signing it, smiling and plugging it. Go away, Tyler Perry, to have a good long think about art and culture and the role of the author, and take this mediocre soundtrack with you.

You can listen to / download the For Colored Girls soundtrack here
Or get it on cd here

For Colored Girls Soundtrack (Songa & Score) – Track List
1. Main Title – Colored Girls Cast
2. Longer & Stronger – Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
3. All Day Long (Blue Skies) – Estelle
4. What More Can They Do – Laura Izibor
5. Sun – Lalah Hathaway
6. Ansomnia – Zaki Ibrahim
7. Settle – Gladys Knight
8. La Donna In Viola – Karen Slack, Andrea Jones-Sojola & Holly’d S’dio Symphony Orchestra
9. Sechita (A Senhora Em Amarelo) – Anika Noni Rose & Carondelet Percussion Ensemble
10. Stand Up – Macy Gray
11. Without A Fight – Janelle Monàe
12. Four Women – Nina Simone, Simone, Laura Izibor & Ledisi
13. I Know Who I Am – Leona Lewis
14. Main Title (Instrumental) – Joshua Bell & Aaron Zigman

Leave your thoughts on For Colored Girls and the For Colored Girls soundtrack in the comments. If you’re looking for a particular track leave a description and someone normally replies.

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8 Comments »

  • Sheridan Passell said

    Chris, who do you want to win X-Factor this year, is it Matt Cardle or are you more of a Cher fan?

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  • chris neilan said

    grumble grumble…..

    This from Paul Morley in The Observer today:

    “My considered response to the way the evil Madame Cole coos and flutters over her brood of fragile female singers on The X Factor, as if she has deep, specialised knowledge of a fantastic history of outsider vocal performers, is to write what appears to be simply a list. This “list”, well, this list would involve names such as Cat Power, Becky and Rachel Unthank, Feist, Fiona Apple, Beth Orton, Tracyanne Campbell, Margo Timmins, Nico, Sandy Denny, Petula Clark, Tori Amos, Hope Sandoval, Buffy Saint-Marie, Grace Slick, Siouxsie Sioux, Polly Harvey, Annette Peacock, Elizabeth Fraser, Dagmar Krause, Kristin Hersh, Laura Nyro, Nancy Wilson, Poly Styrene, Nina Simone, Karen Carpenter, LoneLady, Joni Mitchell, Aimee Mann and Mahalia Jackson… but don’t think of it as a list, think of it as a sort of textual sculpture, a series of gateways, or illuminating digital doors, which contain all the information you need about what I think of the sinister Madame Cole’s made-up qualities and qualifications.”

    Needless to say, I agree.

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    • dnwilliams said

      Cat Power, Feist, Fiona Apple, Beth Orton, Petula Clark, Tori Amos, Nina Simone, Karen Carpenter & Joni Mitchell are the only names I recognize. Music snobbery fail.

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  • dnwilliams said

    I gotta listen to the Janelle Monae track, it can’t be THAT bad. Great songs are on bad soundtracks all the time, I loved that Thom Yorke joint off of that one Twilight movie OST.

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  • chris neilan said

    I agree, but like an angry Stewart Lee I tend to let my reviews get angrier than I might in the real world. Essentially I don’t think most soundtracks deserve the balanced and objective reviewing approach which is standard certainly to almost all print criticism, and therefore if I think they’re cynical or lazy or simple exercises in product differentiation then I treat them with suitable levels of anger/flippancy. My favourite social commentators are the ones who allow their reviews to become subjective, and in their subjectivity they become more emotionally honest, examples ranging from Charlie Brooker (who melds high-brow commentary with the most puerile insults imaginable) to Mark Kermode to Pauline Kael.

    That New Moon soundtrack was not bad, especially the Thom Yorke song. They did a good job. A massive improvement on the Godawful Muse/Paramore soundtrack from the first one.

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  • chris neilan said

    Sample lyrics from the Monae track:

    “I push myself a little harder… ‘cause my dreams ain’t that much farther… hey hey hey hey”

    And it sounds like something from High School Musical. Which is a massive disappointment given how incredible Archandroid and her live performances are.

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  • Shadow Mihai said

    Your passionate commentary on the sound track is hard to contend against, excepting your comment on the original play being nominated for a Tony. It WON a Tony, an Obie and several other awards. And as the progenitor of the “chorepoem” theatrical form (later famous choreopoems are The Vagina Monologues and Diary Of A Catholic School Dropout), it was full of music… none of which was used in the Tyler Perry film or in any incarnation (to my knowledge) of the play after its national tour ended ~1982. However, the Play is being put on in February 2011, including some of the original music, by Visart, in Los Angeles. Music in the current play version varies from 1960s girl-group hits to music from the original play, to tracks composed specifically for the play by feature film composer Carrie Cain Sparks. Do you review theatrical cast/sound track albums, and would you like to hear this?

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  • Danielle with an accent on the a said

    What’s the name of the song at the beginning of the credits?

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