Tonight at the 90th Annual Academy Awards, five songs will be up for the coveted prize of Best Original Song. Songwriting duo Pasek and Paul, who took home the statue last year for La La Land’s “City of Stars,” are hoping to take home the award again for the second year in a row with The Greatest Showman’s “This Is Me,” but with competition like Mary J. Blige and Common – it’s anyone’s to win. Check out the 5 nominees below!
1. Sufjan Stevens, “Mystery of Love”
Call Me By Your Name
Music and Lyrics by Sufjan Stevens.
How much sorrow can I take? Blackbird on my shoulder
and what difference does it make, when this love is over?
Written and performed by American singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens, “Mystery of Love” is a romantic acoustic song that perfectly captures the romance between Call Me By Your Name’s two characters Elio and Oliver. The song hit No. 36 on the Billboard US Hot Rock Songs chart and has been called the dark horse of the Original Song category.
2. Mary J. Blige, “Mighty River”
Music and Lyrics by Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq and Taura Stinson.
Time tells no lies. It keeps changing, and ticking, and moving,
then passes by, but if you’re lucky, it will be kind,
like a river flowing through time.
In addition to her nomination here for “Mighty River,” Blige is also nominated in the Best Supporting Actress category for her role in Mudbound. The emotional ballad was co-written by Raphael Saadiq and strove to harness the theme of unity portrayed in the film by the controversial friendship between a black and white man returning home from WW II.
3. Miguel ft. Natalia Lafourcade, “Remember Me (Dúo)”
Music and Lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez.
Remember me, don’t let it make you cry
For ever if I’m far away, I hold you in my heart.
I sing a secret song to you, each night we are apart
Written by Frozen’s Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez, Coco’s “Remember Me” was sure to be a hit for people of all ages. The song was played in a variety of contexts throughout the film and according to Anderson-Lopez was meant to show that “the power of music can bring people back to life, literally and figuratively”. It also won the Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Song.
4. Andra Day Ft. Common, “Stand Up For Something”
Music by Diane Warren; Lyrics by Lonnie R. Lynn and Diane Warren.
It all means nothing if you don’t stand up for something.
You can’t just talk the talk, you got to walk that walk.
This marks the second Best Original Song nomination for Common who was also recognized in 2015 for “Glory” with John Legend. The film follows a young Thurgood Marshall as he faces one of his greatest challenges while working as a lawyer for the NAACP and the song’s message of standing up for what you believe in has made it a huge inspiration and power player in the recent gun violence prevention movement. It has already won at the Hollywood Film Awards, Satellite Awards, and Hollywood Music in Media Awards.
5. Keala Settle, “This Is Me”
The Greatest Showman
Music and Lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.
When the sharpest words wanna cut me down
I’m gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out
I am brave, I am bruised, I am who I’m meant to be,
This is me.
“This Is Me” has probably been the most talked about nominee this awards season and already has the Golden Globe. The powerful and inspiring ballad encourages listeners to accept themselves for who they are and be proud of all of the things that make them different. Written by last year’s Academy Award winners for Best Original Song, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, “This Is Me” has had amazing international success, finding its way onto music charts all over the world including No. 58 on the US Billboard Hot 100. Keala Settle will be performing the song at the Academy Awards ceremony.
What song do you hope will take the top prize? Be sure to tune into the 90th Annual Academy Awards tonight on ABC!