It’s ridiculous how hard it can sometimes be to find soundtracks for the movies you love, especially from older movies with out-of-print soundtracks. Sometimes there aren’t even legal ways to acquire it. Other times, the “official” soundtrack that was released is incomplete, lacking many of the key songs that made the film so memorable to begin with.
Such is the case with John Waters’ Hairspray, the campy 1988 dance movie set in racially tense Baltimore during the 1960s. Being from Baltimore myself and a fan of cult movies in general–especially ones that involve lots of cheesy dancing and kitschy humor–it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Hairspray is one of my favorites. (And just to be clear, I’m NOT talking about the 2007 movie based on the musical starring John Travolta in drag.)
The official soundtrack that was released for John Waters’ Hairspray only contains twelve songs. You could buy it from Amazon for less than $8 if you really want, but you’re only getting less than half the songs featured in the movie. For example, none of the four Chubby Checker songs are included. Oh, you want Gravy for your Mashed Potatoes? Don’t even think about it.
What’s a Tracy Turnblad wannabe hair hopper to do?
Luckily, I was able to find almost all of the original songs on Spotify, which is surprising given the rarity of some of them. Although Spotify has a ton of playlists for the 2007 Hairspray, it seems nobody yet bothered to make one for John Waters’ original (ahem, superior) version of the movie. I did what had to be done.
Now let’s get all ratted up like a teenage jezebel!
P.S: These are the songs I’m missing that Spotify doesn’t have:
- “Hairspray” – Rachel Sweet (this is the one I’m most heartbroken about)
- “Life’s Too Short” – The Lafayettes
- “The Bird” – The Two Du-Tones
- “The Bug” – Jerry Dallman and Milton Grant
- “Day-O” – Pia Zadora
- “Waddle, Waddle” – Rudy Clark
Supposedly Spotify adds 10,000 new tracks to its music library every single day, so I’m hoping it’s just a matter of time before these lost gems show up. When/if that happens, you can be sure I’ll add them to this playlist! Also, if you have any of these tracks, you can always import them into Spotify yourself to supplement what the service lacks with your own library.