Nov 22 2011

Rocking Retro: Space Jam Soundtrack

As a joke in class the other day, I offered up this gem in a discussion of the best movie soundtracks of all time. Okay, maybe it was only a half-joke; I mean, I know listening to it when you’re 25 certainly doesn’t have the same effect as hearing it for the first time when you’re 10. But I’ll be damned if the nostalgia bug doesn’t bite me pretty hard on some of these tracks.

How can you deny what is arguably R. Kelly’s best song, “I Believe I Can Fly?” How you gonna hate on Seal improving (yes, you read that right) Steve Miller Band’s classic “Fly Like an Eagle?” Remember the Quad City DJ’s? They had more than one hit! And this was the heyday of Coolio! Oh, 1996, how I love thee…..but by far the best moment in this compilation is the rap star basketball sendup “Hit ‘Em High.” B. Real, Busta Rhymes, Coolio, LL Cool J, and Method Man all lay down some pretty fantastic family-friendly rhymes about playing aggressive b-ball. D’Angelo follows the anthem with his soulful “I Found My Smile Again,” another highlight.

And then, well, I won’t say Monica ruins the whole thing, but god I hate “For You I Will.” So much. Salt N Pepa deliver an underrated jam, and Robin S. reminds us all of the mid-90’s Eurodance craze (which we’re apparently re-living in 2011.) Barry White and Chris Rock do a memorable “Basketball Jones” cover, which seemed funnier when I was an adolescent. After that it’s three songs featuring A-listers doing lackluster things (Jay Z and Biz Markie show up!…..with the Spin Doctors and…..who the hell is Changing Faces?). And then there’s the final song: “Buggin.'” A rap song from Bugs Bunny and the Looney Tunes crew. Another track I remember being a lot cooler in third grade, but whatever. If you can’t crack a smile at Bugs Bunny throwing down rhymes, you’ve lost your childhood completely. So turn up your bass, sit back, and recollect just how awesome this movie was. Was Bill Murray ever NOT cool?