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Thundercat, 'Fly Like An Eagle'

The soundtrack for Minions: The Rise of Gru, executive produced by Jack Antonoff, is primarily made up of covers, carefully selected to bridge the gap between the film's audience of toddlers and the parents that accompany them. But instead of making sure that each song is distinctly different from the original, Antonoff opts for the Weezer approach: Make each track as similar to the source material as possible, with a dash of anachronism to keep the more diligent listener invested. Some tracks do a better job at this than others, but a highlight amongst the star-studded tracklist is Thundercat's take on "Fly Like An Eagle."

The original, written by Steve Miller Band and released in 1976, is a dreamy, classic-rock staple that is somehow both incredibly cool and uncool, drenched in reverb and dated synth patterns. In 2022, Thundercat occupies a similar role, but with a commitment to elevating and celebrating jazzy '70s funk. His cover takes the Steve Miller original and gives it a Bootsy Collins flair with keyboard riffs and wah-pedaled bass, somehow very apt for soundtracking the Minions' bright yellow irreverent hijinks.

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Reanna Cruz
Reanna Cruz is a news assistant for NPR Music's Alt.Latino.