Once upon a time, people were pumped about soundtracks they heard while watching movies and couldn’t stop talking about them. Nowadays, movies are accompanied by haphazard music or music without any lyrics. In the 1970s down to the 90s, soundtracks were a big deal, most of them sold millions of copies even after the rave the movies had created.
In this article, we bring you 5 of our favorite soundtracks for black movies that top our all-time list.
This soundtrack was for the movie of the same name which was released in 1992. Whitney Houston did six new recordings on this and it is on record that it shot the diva, who made her debut movie performance, to a new level of stardom. A few songs from the album include “I will always love you,” “I have nothing,” and “I’m every woman.” “I will always love you,” which was the first single from the album, stayed on the of the Billboard Hot 100 chart for 14 weeks. It also won the best pop vocal performance, female, and record of the year at the Grammy Awards the next year. It goes on record that “The Bodyguard” is the bestselling soundtrack of all time, selling 45 million copies worldwide.
This was a double album by Isaac Hayes and it was recorded under Stax Records’ Enterprise label as the soundtrack for the 1971 movie, Shaft. Most of the album was made up of instrumentals composed by Hayes and three songs featuring his voice. In 1972, the theme of the movie won three Grammys. That same year the theme song also won the Best Original Song in the Academy Awards making Hayes the first African American to win an Academy Award in a non-acting category.
This movie by Twentieth Century Fox released in 1974 which starred James Earl Jones and Diahann Carroll had the theme album, Gladys Knight & the Pips as its soundtrack. The album was produced by Curtis Mayfield and was released in March of the same year. Three tracks written and produced on the album by Curtis include Sparkle, Claudine, and Superfly, all of which did very well on the Billboard charts.
Waiting to Exhale
This album, which was the soundtrack of the movie with the same name, was produced by Babyface for Arista records in November 1995. It featured some of the top shots in the industry at the time such as Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, TLC, Faith Evans, Chaka Khan, and Brandy. It remained on top of the Billboard 200 chart for 5 weeks and also topped the R&B Albums chart for 10 weeks. It received 11 Grammy nominations and was certified 7 times platinum.
This movie gained so much praise, not just because of the central characters, but also because of the music. Some of the soundtracks include “The Sweetest Thing” by Lauryn Hill and the Refugee Camp All-Stars, “Hopeless” by Dionne Farris, and “Sumthin Sumthin” by Maxwell.