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Top 10 Songs Written by Lin-Manuel Miranda


Script written by Meera Nehme You know his name, because 2016 was really Lin-Manuel Miranda's year! Not only is he the star of the popular musical, “Hamilton”, but he's an amazingly talented actor, composer, writer, and rapper! For this list we'll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 songs written by Lin-Manuel Miranda!
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Top 10 Songs Written by Lin-Manuel Miranda


These catchy tunes all have one thing in common: the talent of one man. Welcome to MsMojo and today we'll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Songs Written by Lin-Manuel Miranda.

For this list, we're taking a look at the most amazing songs this genius composer has written or co-written in his career . . . so far. We’ll be limiting how many from each musical he’s done to just 3, since he’s just got so many gems to choose from.



#10: “It's All Happening”

“Bring It On: The Musical” (2012)


Along with fellow composers Tom Kitt and Amanda Green, Miranda brought one of our favorite early-teen comedies to the stage. As Campbell tries to form a cheerleading squad at her new school, she must lie to get her classmates to join. She makes false promises to Danielle to get her to form a Jackson cheerleading team, just in time for Nationals. Although they lose the competition, they come together and learn that they got each other to lean on. Lin's famous sound doesn't go unnoticed in this catchy tune completed with his distinct rap verses and a fun dance number featuring the main cast of the show.





#9: “Bigger”

“67th Tony Awards” (2013)


As if Neil Patrick Harris alone wasn’t enough to make us love the 2013 Tony Awards opening, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Tom Kitt had to swoop in and write yet another great song that is one for the ages. It was Harris's fourth time presenting, and just like the title of the song, they decided to go bigger than ever. We get out of breath just watching him spit out funny lyrics as he dances alongside hundreds of dancers in this over-the top number. It is no surprise that the performance earned a standing ovation from the audience filled with our favorite stars.





#8: “Breathe”

“In the Heights” (2008)


Miranda's first Tony-winning musical is filled with incredible songs inspired by his Puerto Rican origins. In this song, his roots appear in the beautiful melody, highlighting Nina's struggles to explain to her family the reason she dropped out of Stanford. Mandy Gonzalez' voice and Lin's heart-felt lyrics are enough to make us understand the character's nostalgia as she finds herself back in Washington Heights. Paired with Spanish and English lyrics, the song takes us back to her early memories growing up in this neighborhood, making for a powerful and emotional tune all around.







#7: “You’re Welcome”

“Moana” (2016)


It's the song that made us fall in love with Maui… and remember just how much we love The Rock. The song introduced the over-confident demi-god and Dwayne Johnson's singing chops to the world, and we can't help but say "Thank you". Miranda's up-lifting lyrics will have you tapping your feet and singing along the fun verses in no time. The song was slowed down and covered by both Jordan Fisher and Lin-Manuel Miranda for the “Moana” soundtrack, still making for an equally great song. Miranda's lyrics never fail!







#6: “In the Heights”

“In the Heights” (2008)

As the opening song of this early-career musical, this number introduced the world to Lin-Manuel Miranda's song-writing and rapping skills. And what a promising effort this was. The song details the characters' regular everyday lives in Washington Heights, through a very fun, up-beat sound. Miranda manages to present most of the main cast right off the bat, through cool, unique harmonies that his fans have since grown to love. Seriously, “In the Heights” was bound to win the Tony Award for Best Musical straight from the start.





#5: “The Schuyler Sisters”

“Hamilton” (2015)


Bring on the Destiny's Child vibes. Other than the fact that Miranda managed to tell history in a whole new way, we're also happy that the Schuyler Sisters got their own power anthem in the musical. Angelica, Eliza and Peggy all shine through this empowering performance for women everywhere. Lin rewrites history, shedding long-overdue light on the women that helped the more famed historical figures. When discussing the Declaration, Angelica even says that she'll prompt Thomas Jefferson to "include women in the sequel". Talk about girl power!







#4: “Yorktown (The World Turned Upside Down)”

“Hamilton” (2015)


Open your history books...or maybe just listen to this song. Miranda brings us through the battle of Yorktown in 1781, led by George Washington, who defeated the British. In an upbeat tune, the cast of “Hamilton” presents the revolutionary war won by the Americans and the French, as Alexander Hamilton struggles with coming home in time for his expecting wife. Through fast rap verses, we get to know those fighting along Hamilton, such as Hercules Mulligan, John Lawrence and, of course, Lafayette. The line "Immigrants, we get the job done" even inspired the single "Immigrants (We Get the Job Done)" on the Hamilton Mixtape.







#3: “96,000”

“In the Heights” (2008)


What would you do with $96,000? After Usnavi finds out they sold a winning lotto ticket at his bodega, the characters in “In the Heights” all start to wonder what they would do if they were the ones to win the money. Their answers are all different, and so are their verses, as they all come together in the end for an incredible blend of melodies. This song leaves the audience wondering how one brain could have possibly come up with this complex mix of voices in the performance.





#2: “How Far I’ll Go”

“Moana” (2016)


Nominated for an Oscar at the 89th Academy Awards, Auli'i Cravalho delivered this song beautifully in the film, and on stage. As Moana longs to sail across the waters, she discovers that she must take matters into her own hands in order to follow her dreams. Miranda's lyrical style seamlessly transitions from stage to a Disney film, giving us a window into Moana’s passion for the ocean, and her longing to sail. The emotional power behind the song -- as well as any time the motif returns -- really shows off Miranda’s ability to set character development to music.





Before we get to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:



#1: “My Shot”

“Hamilton” (2015)


There are many things we love about “Hamilton,” -- namely every other song in it! -- but this song's exciting chorus succinctly outlines what the show is all about: Hamilton's relentless efforts to get what he wants. This song is the pinnacle of Miranda’s mastery of wordplay and double-entendre; for instance, “shot” here references Hamilton’s ultimate demise at the hands of Aaron Burr, Hamilton’s ambition, as well as the alcohol he shares with his newfound cohorts at the beginning of the show. This song took Miranda years to write, but ultimately, we can safely say that it was well worth it.
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