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Nov 28 2018

Soundtracking: Randy Newman's Original Song Nominations

byChris Feil

Happy 75th Birthday to Randy Newman!

Newman has had an extensive musical career,but in these parts we remember the musician as once one of the most Oscar nominated folks without a win - previously missing out on 14 bids in both Original Song and Original Score before finally winning for 2001'sMonsters Inc.track "If I Didn't Have You".To date,he now has a total twenty nominations and two wins,and isn't slowing down anytime soon.Just last year he delivered some massively underrated work forThe Meyerowitz Storiesand will be returning to theToy Storyfranchise for next year's fourth instalment.

Newman's impact on the movies is one of uplift and charm,and a current mainstay in the Mouse House.But Oscar history is the name of this week's Soundtracking game,solet's rank his Best Original Song nominations...

12."Our Town"fromCars
The Cars franchise remains a "worst"golden rule for all involved,and Newman is no exception.Though it moves with trademark Randy Newman melancholy,its narrative overreach is kind of a drag.

11."One More Hour"fromRagtime
You can't blame this one for time overshadowing it with the Broadway musical from the same source material.Or that it was sung by the same singer as a more noteworthy winning song,Norma Rae's "It Goes Like It Goes"' Jennifer Warnes.But he would provide more distinct tracks after this,his first song nomination,so we'll not linger.

10."A Fool in Love"fromMeet the Parents
An opening credits track that preps us for the goofy,classic farce ahead,this one is an odder nomination and one even Oscar hounds are likely to forget happened.But it does display the amiability of Newman's sound that so many filmmakers return to to sell their mainstream

9."That'll Do"fromBabe: Pig in the City
This one hews close to the Babe lore,like if Newman was adapting a familiar fairy tale into song.The blend of Randy Newman goodwill and Peter Gabriel silky uplift is like musical bacon and I am kind of into it.

8."Make Up Your Mind"fromThe Paper
If "One More Hour"is like a Randy Newman song on downers,then this is on every upper in the cabinet.The Paperis such a hodgepodge that the song sells it as fun.Go off,Ran'!

7."If I Didn't Have You"fromMonsters Inc.
The song that would finally get Newman his Oscar is a sweet ditty in the spirit of the film's whimsy,and borrows largely from the feeling (and our memories) of his other odes to friendship - but we'll get to that.And against his competition,it was hard to argue about finally honoring the legend for this quintessential sweetness.

6."We Belong Together"fromToy Story 3
Newman would get his second Oscar for the big band big feeling of this song,one that embodies the franchise's optimism and again puts the musician's signature sound center stage.This win may not be as remembered as his first win,but it's even better.

5."Down in New Orleans"from The Princess and the Frog
The Princess and the Frogremains one of Disney's underrated treasures and Newman's work alongside that distinction."Down in New Orleans"plays largely as tonal establishment in the film,and that's about it.But it's charming and expansive no matter how unimposing.

4."When She Loved Me"fromToy Story 2
This one leans hard into the melancholy of the series,but also is Newman's most narratively specific songwriting nomination in the pack,the kind of story specific piece the music branch wishes for.But,I mean,*sniffle* why do you gotta make us feel so guilty,Randy?

3."Almost There"fromThe Princess and the Frog
Speaking of how underrated the film and its music is,this song is such a showstopper,Newman's stylings finding an unexpectedly harmonious fit with Anika Noni Rose.We love when Newman gives us aproductionand this is the one.

2."I Love to See You Smile"fromParenthood
One of the underappreciated aspects of original movie music is genuine cultural relevance.Even as an adult contemporary standard,this one has one of Newman's largest pop relevances.How many folks forget that this is even originally from a movie?

1."You've Got a Friend in Me"fromToy Story
A true no-brainer pick,but Oscar instead opted for the (also genius) "Colors of the Wind"from Pocahontas.Disney vs.Disney here must have put the winner at an advantage being closer to an outright musical,but Newman's contriubtion here has arguably cemented itself deeper in movie history and our cinematic lexicon.Its opening bars are some of the most recognizable in the movies,elicitly a vocal appreciative sigh from any crowd.The song is also one of the most definitive elements of one of our most beloved franchises,gilded with a sentiment we also love outside of the narrative.It's the one that we'll remember him by.

All Soundtracking installments can be foundhere!

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Reader Comments (12)

Glad to see "You've Got a Friend in Me"at #1.That really is Randy Newman's most iconic song,and a song that is most emblematic of Pixar.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered Commenterajnrules

Oooof...Colours of the Wind vs You've Got a Friend in Me is a tough choice!!
I think I'd go for CotW too though.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterJB

I love "Our Town,"would have awarded it the Oscar that year.The scene it plays over is a real tearjerker.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

"One More Hour"was Bette Midler's favourite that year.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Sarah McLachlan's voice on "When She Loved Me,is heavenly!<3

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterBhuray

Given the competition,I would actually argue Newman has deserved not a single Best Original Song Oscar.I do,however,think he deserved Best Original Score prizes for THE NATURAL and PLEASANTVILLE.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew Carden

As much as I adore Toy Story 3 and still believe it should have won Best Picture,I'm all the same still sad that "I See The Light"lost.Underrated song from an underrated movie.I wonder if Alan Menken will ever win that 9th so far elusive Oscar.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

"When She Loved Me"is his greatest nomination.God,that one brings out the razors and the the pills.Geez

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterMorgan (the 1st)

Thanks for this article!

I'm so glad that "I Love to See You Smile"is so high up.I've always loved that song.The 1989 race is between that and "After All"from Chances Are for me.

And Randy Newman was so touching when he won his first Oscar.

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

Colors of the Wind is also incredible,and definitely FEELS more epic on paper bc it's like teaching us a lesson n shit,but...on second thought,You've Got a Friend in me is the true epic classic.I mean,the solace in that loss is that it did at least lose to another incredible Disney song,and there was probably no way to tell the lasting impact of You've Got a Friend in Me.

When She Loved Me is truly one of the most heartbreaking songs.I remember when I was 15,I found myself in the middle of a war my family was waging against each other,and my grandma (aka my best friend) didn't speak to me for five whole years...that song was fucking SOUL CRUSHING in it's lyrical accuracy to my situation,and I'll forever be grateful for feeling understood by it,in a strange way,

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip H.

'One More Hour' is far and away my favourite of these.Such a beautiful,poignant song - I fell in love with it when I watched the film for the first time (which is flawed but still interesting).

November 28,2018 | Unregistered CommenterSteve G

"That'll Do"by far,thought "When She Loved Me"is a great runner-up.

Very clear example of "When bad oscars happen to worthy people."亚博主页

November 29,2018 | Unregistered CommenterArkaan

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