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The first official music video from the Hamilton mixtape is here, and it’s a powerful one.
The album, released after the Tony Award-winning musical’s historical success, consists of a combination of covers from the show’s soundtrack and new songs inspired by the production. “Immigrants (We Get The Job Done)” is one of the latter, inspired by a lyric in the Hamilton song “Yorktown (The World Turned Upside Down).”
Lin-Manuel Miranda debuted a video for the song Wednesday morning on the Today Show, and like the lyrics, it focuses on the lives of immigrants and refugees—from war-torn neighborhoods and ICE raids to their endless contributions to American society.
“This election cycle has brought xenophobia and vilification of immigrants back to the forefront of US politics. This is a musical counterweight,” Miranda wrote about the song on Genius. “On the lineup we have K’naan, Snow Tha Product, Riz MC and Residente: Each MC culturally represents from a different place on the map. These are my favorite MCs from all over the world. They can speak to this theme from their brilliant perspectives.”
As Mashable notes, the artists’ backgrounds are Somali Canadian, Puerto Rican, British Pakistani and Mexican-American, respectively.
Director Tomás Whitmore chose lots of dark scenes of factory floors, crowded subway cars, and underground tunnels to help give weight to lyrics about “America’s ghost writers.”
That’s not the end of the excitement, though. While he was at Today, Miranda also announced a Prizeo contest to benefit the Immigrants: We Get The Job Done Coalition, “an alliance of immigration-focused nonprofits throughout the US assembled by The Hispanic Federation.”
He’s calling it #Ham4All, and for a minimum donation of $10, fans will be in the running for a grand prize of tickets to the Los Angeles Hamilton premiere and a meet-and-greet with Miranda.
Singing isn’t mandatory to enter, but Miranda invites fans to “post a video of yourself singing any song from Hamilton you’d like—any section of any song” using the hashtag to spread the word about the contest. Celebs like Shonda Rhimes and Steph and Ayesha Curry have already accepted the challenge:
@ayeshacurry and I are collaborating with Lin-Manuel Miranda to raise money for a coalition of immigration organizations. We all feel strongly about supporting these important organizations fighting to protect immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers who want to make a better life for themselves and their families. The grand prize winner will join us and Lin-Manuel at the LA opening on August 16th. We think that this will be the biggest Hamilton sweepstakes yet, but we need your help… Head over to prizeo.com/Hamilton for more details. #ham4all #thatgirlgood
A post shared by Wardell Curry (@stephencurry30) on
Christine Friar is a writer and editor in New York who focuses on streaming entertainment and internet culture. Her work has appeared in the Awl, the Fader, New York Magazine, Paper Magazine, Vogue, Elle, and more.