I Am Sam - Music from and Inspired by the Motion Picture
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I Am Sam (Original Soundtrack)
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Is the soundtrack to the 2001 film I Am Sam. It was released on January 8, 2002
Jessie Nelson's poignant tale of a mentally challenged man named Sam (Sean Penn) who recruits a lawyer to help him regain custody of his young daughter leans heavily on the lead character's obsession with Beatles songs, and his innocent trust in their wisdom and emotional truth. It's an artistic gambit that shrewdly lends itself to this mostly rewarding collection of Beatles covers by a wide range of contemporary artists, many of whom no doubt leapt at the chance to record a treasured song by their own musical heroes. The renditions are by and large faithful, and inform the elemental genius of the originals by the strength and variety of the artist's voices alone. The husband-wife team of Aimee Mann and Michael Penn (Sean's brother) can't help but find resonance in "Two of Us," just as Nick Cave's latter-day, heart-on-his-sleeve crooner infatuation makes "Let It Be" all his own. It's the reinterpretations that are riskier. While Paul Westerberg's stripped-down, nasal reading of "Nowhere Man" perceptively underscores Lennon's inherent Dylan fetish and Howie Day turns "Help!" from anxious plea to desperate dirge, Grandaddy smugly alt-rocks the energy right out of "Revolution." The Beatles hardly need anyone to burnish their reputation, but this album goes a long way toward underscoring their most undersung legacy as rock's most transcendent melting pot. -Jerry McCulley
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He opted for the latter and - in a project which was recorded in about three days - what was produced is one of the finest movie soundtracks ever. The 17 tracks - the European edition has three additional songs - are fitting tributes to the poetic majesty of The Beatles, with each artist adding a bit of spice from their own performance repertoire.
The signature song may be Across the Universe by Rufus Wainwright, as the vocal/guitar combination is absolutely stunning. Heather Nova's rendition of We Can Work It Out is nothing short of powerful, while Grandaddy brings a healthy dose of David Byrne-inspired quirkiness to Revolution.
Eddie Vedder (You've Got to Hide Your Love Away), Ben Harper (Strawberry Fields Forever) and Ben Fields (Golden Slumbers) are standouts, with Nick Cave's Let It Be a fitting way to end the CD.
The soundtrack stands alone as a masterpiece and - at the very least - will be pointed to by music critics and fans as a beautiful tribute to a revolutionary band whose music will continue to stand the test of time.
However, nothing can be as good as the Beatles' versions of these songs. After listening to the cd for a few days, I pulled out my Beatles collection and had a great time listening to it all.
Like most soundtracks, it gets old after a while. However, it's upbeat, great for mixes, and a good listen. It's worth having, even if you won't have it in your cd player for days on end.
With the I am Sam CD this basic Soundtrack principle is accomplished as the main character in the film (Sean Pean) relies in Beatles Songs in to put order in his life. In order to do so the Beatles covers are simple and effective providing the right support to the ilm plot.
Nevertheless, by using Beatles songs it is almost imposible not to compare the results with the original works by the fab four. In my point of view this is pointless as Beatles songs are probably the most covered songs in the planet so you either like the cover or choose among the many other available.
As for the songs in this CD there are a few the stand out because of the interpretation, emotion or overall stregnth in the performance. Across the Universe (Rufus Wainwright), I'm looking through you (Wallflowers), You've got to hide your love away, Golden Sulumbers (Ben Folds), Lucy in thye Sky with Diamond (Black Crowes), Don't let me Down (Stereophonics), Help (Howie), etc.
The rest of the songs are also good it is just a matter of taste whether you like them or not. This soundtrack is very much linked to the film, but after all, that is what soundtracks are made for, or not?