All proceeds from the new song go to Unidos Disaster Relief Fund.
Lin-Manuel Miranda pays tribute to the victims of the hurricanes that hit Puerto Rico last month with a new song listing all the towns that have been affected by the devastation. 'Almost Like Praying' features a number of Latino artists, with all proceeds going to the disaster relief fund.
Lin-Manuel Miranda at the Oscar nominee luncheon
'Almost Like Praying' featuring Artists for Puerto Rico has been released on Atlantic Records with a video showing various artists singing the names of the 78 towns that were struck by Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma across Puerto Rico.
'Say it loud and there's music playing / Say it soft and it's almost like praying', Miranda sings in the opening verse.
With all proceeds from the sales of the song going to The Hispanic Federation's Unidos Disaster Relief Fund, among the vocalists joining 'Hamilton' superstar Lin-Manuel Miranda are Marc Anthony, Gloria Estefan, Luis Fonsi, John Leguizamo, Jennifer Lopez, Joell Ortiz, Gina Rodrigues and many others.
'You know how we always tell artists 'stay in your lane' anytime they say something remotely political? I'm trying to use what I do in service of this challenge', Miranda told Rolling Stone. 'We're facing a humanitarian crisis right now. And the response from our federal government is not commensurate with the previous two hurricanes, much less up to the unprecedented danger of this disaster itself.'
The track has been produced by Jeffrey 'Trooko' Penalva, with the video co-directed by Miranda, Cesar Camacho and Luis A. Miranda, Jr.. Apparently, the song contains 'elements' of the song 'Maria' from 'West Side Story', which was originally written by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim in 1956.
'They gave their blessing within a day', Miranda said. 'When there's a crisis, you call in all the favors - call the gods of musical theater! I have the great fortune to count Sondheim as a mentor and a friend. I worked with him and Bernstein on the 2009 revival of West Side Story and its Spanish translations. Sondheim wrote back immediately and said 'Yes - and what else can I do?''