Driving around the other day, Mike and I got on a major roll reminiscing about the Hair soundtrack, an album that kind of inexplicably became a part of our pre-teen lives. Imagine me, or Mike for that matter, singing in our room “Black boys are nutritious, black boys fill me up“.
Strangely, my mom was totally cool with me having this fairly explicit album–she even took my friends and I to see it for my birthday when I was only in sixth grade. The actors got naked and I got psyched. But she still got mad when I made her stop the car radio on I Want Your Sex… Which still seems kind of hypocritical.
Anyway, after Mike spent so much time talking about it, I went home and bought the psychedelic looking original Broadway cast recording and… Umm, okay so this might not be for everyone. If you didn't grow up with it (and therefor have a nostalgic connection), or if you don't really like “edgy” off Broadway musicals, go elsewhere. There's lots of theater pizzazz, for example a woman in the song Air couldn't say the word “hayllo” more like a stage actor, but that's to be expected from an original Broadway cast recording. If I recall, there's more than enough of it in the other big original Broadway cast recording from my childhood, A Chorus Line (which I can still remember nearly all the lyrics to). Ask Mike about his part in The Chorus Line.
Listening to it all over again is fun and some of the songs stand on their own as greats, like Easy To Be Hard; Colored Spade; Where Do I Go?; The Flesh Failures (Let the Sunshine In); and Good Morning Starshine. But it's meant to be heard all together as a complete piece, and even as I write this I think it's growing on me as more than a bit of nostalgia.
Hair will be performed in Central Park this summer as part of the Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park program from July 22nd to August 31st. Free tickets will be available the day of the show starting at 1pm.