Let’s just be honest from the start: I am shocked whenever Fifty Shades of Grey receives any sort of critical acclaim or adoration. The book wasn't very good, and the movie was better, but award-worthy? That's debatable to me. But, when I heard that the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack had been nominated for a 2016 Grammy Award, I was actually not shocked. Because here is one of the redeeming things about the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise, in my opinion: The soundtrack to that movie absolutely rocks. In fact, I was often taken out of the moment while watching the movie by the awesome song playing in the background that seemed sort of removed (in a good way!) from what exactly was playing out on screen. So, it’s no surprise to me that the album was nominated for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media for the 2016 Grammy Awards, because — let’s face it — it’s even better than the movie.
Listen, I try my best not to be a hater. I went into Fifty Shades of Grey with an open mind and an eagerness to be seriously turned on, but there was something about both the book that felt too stilted to be sexy and too awkward to be alluring. Dakota Johnson was the greatest part of the movie, but that soundtrack tho? The. Best. Forever.
The Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack is everything that soundtracks used to be: A sampling of the musical times. Remember how definitive the Clueless soundtrack was in your life, and how you played it on repeat for all of 1996? That is the kind of album that the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack is. With contemporary artists like The Weeknd, Ellie Goulding, Beyoncé, and Sia, this album is a hotbed of what’s popular in music right now. In fact, a number of the new songs on the album were nominated for their own Grammy Awards, including Ellie Goulding’s “Love Me Like You Do” for Best Pop Solo Performance and Best Song Written for Visual Media and The Weeknd’s “Earned It (Fifty Shades of Grey)” for Best R&B Performance, Best R&B Song, and Best Song Written for Visual Media.
But the thing that really makes this album soar? The fact that, sprinkled in with all of this amazing new contemporary music, there are artists like The Rolling Stones, Annie Lennox, and Frank Sinatra to round out the depth of its track list. Because of that, this album manages to be both timeless and representative of the modern era, which is a pretty incredible feat.
Image: Focus Features; Giphy