A Beginner’s Guide to Broadway Bangers

Nothing is better than sharing your favorite music with people. But let’s say your favorite music is show tunes (I wouldn’t know anyone like that, of course), then it becomes a little bit harder. When I’m really invested in a soundtrack, I automatically want to spread the love and talk all about the lyrics, the instrumentals, the vocals and, of course, the little thing the guitar does in “Corner of the Sky” from Pippin.

I get it though, it’s not everyone’s style. But when everyone tries to get me to love new rap, trap, EDM, or whatever it may be, I wish just a smidge that people appreciated the magic of musicals. So, to try and appease the masses, I use my one-song limit on songs that could appeal to a non-Broadway fan or that you can listen to out-of-context of a show. 

May I present to you… the Beginner’s Guide to Broadway Bangers! A mix of ballads, love duets, and songs about self-love, care, and growth. Listen now on Spotify

  1. 1. Wait for It - Hamilton

    Aaron Burr (played by Leslie Odom Jr.) singing? That's all. Oh, also he won the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical in 2016 for this role. *shrug* *hair flip*

  2. 2. Just a Moment - High School Musical: The Musical: The Series

    Okay, not necessarily Broadway, but it's in a show about theatre kids so I'm going to count it. Joshua Bassett and Olivia Rodrigo wrote this song then sang it to each other in the scene before opening night as Troy and Gabriella sooo... yeah there's that. 

  3. 3. All I've Ever Known - Hadestown

    There's a reason Hadestown won eight Tony Awards this year. If I'm really trying to recommend something to listen to, it'd be the whole soundtrack.

  4. 4. She Used to Be Mine - Waitress

    This basically gets everyone in the feels. Thank you, Sara Bareilles.

  5. 5. Crazy Rolling - Moulin Rouge!

    I was lucky enough to see Moulin Rouge! with the original cast. Having never seen the original Baz Luhrmann film from 2001, I wasn't sure what to expect. But a mashup "Crazy" and "Rolling in the Deep" sung by one of my favorites, Aaron Tveit, was not it. 10/10 recommend. 

  6. 6. 1-2-3 - On Your Feet!

    Gloria Estefan. Yes. 

  7. 7. A Soft Place to Land - Waitress

    Yeah, I put another one from Waitress what are you gonna do about it?

  8. 8. You Matter to Me - Waitress

    Third time's the charm for Waitress! Yes, this may be sung by two married people having a *spoiler* affair, but I still can't get enough???

  9. 9. Wondering - High School Musical: The Musical: The Series

    More HSMTMTS but seriously if you haven't watched what have you been doing?

  10. 10. Don't Rain On My Parade - Glee Version

    A classic. Unpopular opinion but I do love Lea Michele's version in Glee maybe a bit more than the original... 

  11. 11. My Man - Glee Version

    Lea Michele strikes again!

  12. 12. All I Want - High School Musical: The Musical: The Series

    I LOVE HSMTMTS OKAY.

  13. 13. Seasons of Love - RENT

    You know you wanna. 

  14. 14. Let It Go - Frozen: The Broadway Musical

    While Idina Menzel's classic power song is hard to top, Caissie Levy does more than just justice to this one. 

  15. 15. Pretty Funny - Dogfight

    While this one may be a bit sad, Dogfight, in general, is one I can't fangirl over enough. If you like La La Land or Dear Evan Hansen, the same lyricists who wrote those wrote this one, just saying.

  16. 16. Corner of the Sky - Pippin

    I'm not sure what it is about this song that makes me so happy. The first time I heard it, I only heard the instrumental (random, I know, thanks Pandora) and was able to appreciate the perfection of Stephen Schwartz's composition. Turns out, the lyrics are just as perfect. 

  17. 17. The Next Ten Minutes - The Last Five Years

    Okay, a bit depressing maybe. But Jeremy Jordan and Anna Kendrick? Come on. If you have the chance to watch the movie, it's a phenomenal piece of art told in reverse from two points of view. *chef's kiss*

  18. 18. They Can't Take That Away from Me - An American in Paris

    While this isn't the only rendition of this song, it's my favorite :-) If you're looking for a lot of instrumental background music for studying, An American in Paris is it. 

  19. 19. World Burn - Mean Girls

    Talk about badass. I can never get enough of this song. For even more badass-ery, check out Renee Rapp, who took over Regina George on Broadway after original Taylor Louderman left the show, sing it here. ***Must listen to the whole thing!!!

  20. 20. Waving Through a Window - Dear Evan Hansen

    I don't even know what to say about this masterpiece. Just listen to it if you haven't yet. Also written by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (see #15).

  21. 21. Defying Gravity - Wicked

    What I've always loved about Wicked (besides EVERYTHING) is how it quickly became a musical that transcended culture and was able to find places in the hearts of people who didn't traditionally love Broadway (like my parents). If you haven't heard this song yet during your time on planet Earth, I'm going to put aside my pure shock and encourage you to listen ASAP. 

While I understand that the flashy show tune sound and overwhelming chance there could be a large tap number in the middle of a song isn't for everyone, some lyrics and melodies are too beautiful not to share.