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Super Soundtrack

Super Soundtrack: “POSE” Series Finale [S3E7]

You might have been crying so hard that your tears kept you from seeing the show, but at least you could still hear the music that served as the soundtrack for the season finale of “POSE.”

This is the first article in a series of features I have planned to release on MusicNewsRumor.com. It’s called “Super Soundtrack,” and I’ll do a deep dive into all the songs featured in the top TV series and films breaking down how the songs add to the scene and give a little breakdown of the context of the music. Songwriters, producers, which album the song appeared on, who originally recorded the song, which key lyrics were used in the project; it’s all fair game.

The debut “Super Soundtrack” feature I’m doing is a compilation of all the songs featured in Season 3 Episode 7 (the series finale) of “POSE.” This series in particular is especially driven by music because the songs and the artists who wrote and performed them are so representative of the time period portrayed. Looking at the songs alone allows you to track the year that scenes are set in, which is especially helpful in an episode of a show like this with a number of flash forwards. Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Janet Mock & Co. really curated an impressive set of songs for this episode with music from heavy-hitters like Whitney, Aretha, Diana, Janet, and more featured.

You might have been crying so hard that your tears kept you from seeing the show, but at least you could still hear the music that served as the soundtrack for “POSE” S3E7:

“Love Lives On” by Joe Cocker (1987)
(performed by the Gay Men’s Choir on “POSE”)

Pray explained to Ricky that after rehab, he was in search of community and a space to raise his voice in protest, so he found an outlet to protest in the Gay Men’s Choir. As they enter the venue, the choir is singing “Love Lives On.”

The song is power ballad performed by Joe Cocker and co-written by Bruce Broughton, Barry Man, Cynthia Weil, and Will Jennings. Released on the original soundtrack of the 1987 movie, Harry and the Hendersons, the song played over the end credits of the film and was later released as a single.

Key lyrics:
“You touched my life
And turned my heart around
Seems when I found you
It was me I really found”

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Diana Ross (1970)

Pray and Blanca performed a lip sync duet of “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” at the ball to pay tribute to the “grandest diva” Diana Ross. The song was taken from “her iconic 1983 Live From Central Park performance.” Their flowy entrance, with a little help from some manufactured wind, made for an instantly iconic scene, and that was even before they pulled off some surprise wardrobe reveals and a surprise grand finale that I’ll just let you watch for yourself.

The song was written by Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson in 1966 before being released by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell in 1967. It had a resurgence in popularity in 1970 when Diana Ross recorded the song, going on to be her first solo Hot 100 #1 hit and earning a nomination at the GRAMMYs for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

Key lyrics:
“Ain’t no mountain high enough
Ain’t no valley low enough
Ain’t no river wide enough
To keep me from you”

“I Say A Little Prayer” by Aretha Franklin (1968)

This song plays during a sequence when Pray is taking his makeup off after performing at the ball earlier that night. “I Say A Little Prayer” was written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David originally for Dionne Warwick. Her version of the song peaked at #4 on the Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart in 1967 and peaked at #8 on the R&B Singles Chart. The very next year, Aretha Franklin recorded her version of the song, which peaked at #10 on the Hot 100 and #3 on the R&B Singles chart in 1968. Aretha’s version saw a radical change in harmony and production from the original Dionne Warwick version. It was actually released as a B-side to “The House That Jack Built,” but ended up earning its own airplay taking over its A-side single.

Key lyrics:
“(Forever) Forever, (And ever) yeah
(You’ll stay in my heart and I will love you)
(Forever) Forever, (And ever) ever
(We never will part, oh, how I love you)
(Together) Together, (Together) together
(That’s how it must be to live without you)
(Would only mean heartbreak for me)”

“The Man I Love”
(Performed by the Gay Men’s Choir on “POSE”)

For this scene, we return to the Gay Men’s Choir, where Ricky sings “The Man I Love.” The music for the song was written by George Gershwin with lyrics written by his brother Ira. It was part of the score for the 1924 Gershwin musical comedy, Lady, Be Good, before being removed and placed into the 1927 Gershwin government satire Strike Up the Band.

However, its Broadway musical roots aren’t what made it such a hit, as it is more popular known from being recorded in different variations by Marion Harris, Sophie Tucker, Paul Whiteman & His Orchestra, and by Fred Rich & His Orchestra. The emotional scene ends with Ricky shedding a tear right before going to commercial (or, if you’re watching on streaming, as the scene ends).

Key Lyrics:
“Maybe Tuesday will be my good news day
He’ll build a little home
Just meant for two
From which I’ll never roam
Who would, would you?
And so all else above
I’m waiting for the man I love”

“Love Like This” by Faith Evans (1998)

We flash forward in time to see Blanca, Elektra, Angel, and Lulu live out their wildest “Sex and the City” fantasy. During their ladies’ lunch, we get caught up on what these characters have been up to in the time leading up to the flash forward. Elektra is a wealthy businesswoman raking in the dough with “webcam interactions” and quietly donating charitably to hospitals, drug treatment facilities, and paying for hormones and surgeries. Lulu is helping people with their taxes after being moved to the tax department. Angel is a full-time mother to a third grader, for whom she makes breakfast every morning. “It’s just cereal and milk, but I put a napkin out and everything,” she says. Blanca has finished nursing school and is officially a certified nurse. It really seems that everyone is living their “happy moments.”

The full-circle moment is soundtracked by “Love Like This” by Faith Evans. This song was written by Faith Evans, Amen-Ra, P Diddy, Clarence Emery, and Schon Crawford, and it was released on Faith Evans’ 1998 album, Keep the Faith. It also samples a riff from Chic’s 1978 track “Chic Cheer” on a loop. One of Faith Evans’ biggest hits, it peaked at #7 on the Hot 100 becoming her highest charting solo single to date and is certified gold. In 1999, the song was nominated at the GRAMMYs for Best Female R&B Performance.

Key Lyrics:
“I never knew there was a
Love like this before
Never had someone to show me a love
Love like this before
Now that we have, come to be
A brand new light, I can see”

“Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here” by Deborah Cox (1998)

As Blanca leaves the ladies lunch with Elektra, Angel, and Lulu, we change locations. Moving to the ballroom, we see Grandmother Blanca and Father Ricky preparing the next class of the House of Evangelista to walk the ball together.

This passing-of-the-baton scene takes place after the 1998 song was Deborah Cox’s biggest hit, and it peaked at #2 on the Hot 100 for a total of eight weeks. It was written by Montell Jordan with Anthony “Shep” Crawford, who also produced it. At the time, it broke the record for having spent the most weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart with fourteen weeks.

Key Lyrics:
“How did you get here
Nobody’s supposed to be here”

“Go Deep” by Janet Jackson (1998)

The House of Evangelista walks the ball led by Father Ricky and Grandmother Blanca, and the scene plays over Janet Jackson’s “Go Deep.” The song was written and produced by Janet Jackson, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, with additional writing credit from René Elizondo Jr. The track was released as the fourth single off her 1997 album, The Velvet Rope.

Key Lyrics:
“We go deep
And we don’t get no sleep
‘Cause we be up all night
Until the early light”

“My Love Is Your Love” by Whitney Houston (1999)

The final song to be played in the series, “My Love Is Your Love” is featured as Blanca gives advice to an up-and-coming mother similar to how Pray Tell gave her advice at the start of the first season. It shows the growth that Blanca has experienced as a character over the course of these three seasons. It continues to play as she walks down the street and the screen fades to black.

Released in 1999, this Whitney Houston song was written and produced by Wyclef Jean and Jerry Deuplessis. It served as the fourth single from her fourth album of the same name. It was a massive hit for Whitney, charting in numerous countries. Trisha Yearwood later covered the song in 2016 for The Passion musical, and it was also covered on season three of “Glee.” Interesting enough, the song also features a vocal cameo from daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown with background vocals from Bobby Brown.

Key Lyrics:
“’Cause your love is my love 
And my love is your love
It would take an eternity to break us
And the chains of Amistad couldn’t hold us”

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