Walt Disney Records is set to release Disney and Pixar’s
SOUL is directed by Academy Award® winner Pete Docter (“Inside Out,” “Up”), co-directed by Kemp Powers (“One Night in Miami”) and produced by Academy Award nominee Dana Murray, p.g.a. (Pixar short “Lou”). Disney and Pixar’s SOUL will be available exclusively on Disney+ (where Disney+ is available) beginning Dec. 25, 2020.
SOUL is set in two distinct worlds, gritty New York City and the ethereal cosmic realms of The Great Before, which called for two styles of music that help shape and define each world. Globally renowned musician and GRAMMY® nominee Jon Batiste provided the original jazz compositions and arrangements for the film, and Oscar® winners Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (“The Social Network”), from Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Nine Inch Nails, created an original score that will drift between the real and soul worlds.
The soundtrack also includes the songs “Rappin Ced” performed by Daveed Diggs, “Parting Ways” performed by Cody ChesnuTT, and Batiste’s cover of the Curtis Mayfield classic “It’s All Right.”
Docter said, “Jon Batiste is a fantastic musician—he’s a historian yet is able to push the music forward, bringing all these different influences to the work. I sincerely hope that the jazz music in SOUL will inspire a whole new generation.”
Batiste said, “All the compositions are influenced by a large swath of the hundred-plus years of jazz music, which gives the listener a lot of reference points. It’s a subtle way to pay homage while also introducing a whole new audience to these types of sounds.”
On creating the score Reznor said, “Our first step is always to listen and really try to understand where the filmmakers are coming from—what they’re seeing, what they’re imagining. We spent a lot of time discussing how you’re supposed to feel when you’re first exposed to the SOUL world. Then we went back to our studio, which is filled with a variety of real, imagined and synthetic instruments, and spent the first chunk of time experimenting with different arrangements and different instruments and seeing what felt emotionally right to create the fabric of this world.”
According to Ross, they wanted to help differentiate the areas of that world. “There’s The Great Before, The Great Beyond, The Astral Plane, The You Seminar,” he says. “Every place needed its own identity.”
Docter said, “We wanted the score for this film to be different from any other Pixar film. We were excited to work with Trent and Atticus because we knew they would bring us places we’d never gone before. Their unique approach to sound and creative thinking made them really inspiring to work with.”
The digital SOUL Original Motion Picture Soundtrack features 42 score and jazz tracks; the SOUL Original Score vinyl album by Reznor and Ross features 23 tracks (Side A 12 tracks / Side B 11 tracks); and Music From and Inspired By SOUL vinyl album by Jon Batiste features 22 tracks (Side A 15 tracks / Side B 7 tracks), including his cover of “It’s All Right.”