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BROWN SUGAR

About The Music
Icons of the hip-hop world – Fabolus, Beenie Siegel, Doug E Fresh, Slick Rick. Dana Dane, Method Man, Big Danny Kane, Kool g Rap, de la Soul, Talib Kweli, Common, Questlove, Black Thought, Jermain Dupri and Pete Rock – appear in the film's opening sequence. Their answers to the question, "when did you fall in love with hip-hop?" reveal that the romance with the music is heartfelt and everlasting.

Famuyiwa says, "I thought that it would be interesting to ask some real folks that question, because that's the metaphor of the film. It was also very important to me to not only use hip-hop as the backdrop but to also implement some true hip-hop legends in the film.

Working with Doug E Fresh, Slick Rick, and new artists like Fabulous, Method Man, and Mos Def was a true blessing," states Famuyiwa. "I mean Russell Simmons even makes a cameo in the film."

Composer Robert Hurst enjoyed the chance to create source music that accentuates and unites the film's diverse musical and emotional layers. He let himself be inspired by the action on the screen. He recalls, "The actors did a great job of getting their vibes and feelings across on screen. I simply watched the acting and listened to Rick to connect the dots. There is music in everything and a ‘musician' knows what to play and how to play it."

Hurst believes that the score music and source music function in parallel to enhance the director's vision for each scene and story line. The benefits of such an arrangement are that "one is allowed to enjoy familiar source music, new original ‘pop' songs, and a host of textures in the under-score throughout the film."

Famuyiwa was deeply involved in supervising the musical elements for the film. He explains, "Hip-hop is literally a character in the film, so I had to be a director in selecting the music as well. And considering how the music adds to the scenes and to the filmmaking process, it was important to choose wisely."

As befits a film that uses hip-hop as an integral ‘character,' BROWN SUGAR is saturated with music, which was supervised by Barry Cole and Christopher Covert. Their choices combine both old school and contemporary hip-hop music with jazz and a traditional underscore to create a rich and diverse sound. Cole explains, "There are two different worlds of music within the film. The music that the characters deal with directly and the music that tracks the characters' emotional growth."

The soundtrack, which includes original songs written expressly for the film, classics and previously unreleased material, will be released by MJM/MCA Records on October 1. The title track, BROWN SUGAR by Mos Def, is followed by "Love Of My Life (An Ode to Hip-Hop)' by Erykah Badu featuring Common; Angie Stone on "Bring Your Heart;' Blackstar with "Brown Sugar (Raw);" Jill Scott's "Easy Conversation;" Blackalicious "It's Going Down;" India. Arie's "Get It Together;" Mos Def "Breakdown;" Hi-Tek "No One Knows Her Name;" Eric B. and Rakim "Paid In Full (Seven Minutes Of Madness);" Rahsaan Patterson "You Make Life So Good;" Boogie Down Productions' "The Bridge Is Over;" Mary J. Blige and Missy Elliot on "Never Seen;" and Cassandra Wilson's rendition of "Time After Time." Mos Def's "Brown Sugar; Love Of My Life (An Ode To Hip-Hop)" by Erykah Bad

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