Those of you who watch One Tree Hill are familiar with character Peyton’s biological mother, Ellie, and her struggle with cancer. You will also know that Peyton and Ellie got a group of bands to contribute songs for a benefit CD to raise money for cancer. Well, One Tree Hill: Friends With Benefit is the first time a storyline in a TV show has put together a soundtrack. Not only is there a soundtrack, but a portion of its proceeds will go to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. (NBCF) just like Ellie and Peyton planned in the show.
So why did the creators of One Tree Hill decide to make this compilation CD a reality? If you ask creator and executive producer Mark Schwahn, he’ll tell you “We have an audience of young girls and women and selfishly, we’d like to keep them alive and healthy for years to come.” And NBCF is eager for this opportunity as it provides a way to reach the younger audiences that watch the show and perhaps help with early detection of breast cancer.
How else is One Tree Hill trying to help raise awareness and funds for breast cancer? Brooke’s ”Clothes Over Bros” will be selling pink tshirts with the Friends With Benefit logo to raise money for NBCF as well.
So how good is this Friends With Benefit album? Those who watch the show will definitely enjoy it, as the album is put together by artists who are heard, and sometimes appear as guest stars, on One Tree Hill. And unlike so many TV soundtracks out there, every track reflects the emotions and feel of One Tree Hill in a such a way that it truly is a successful soundtrack.
Friends With Benefit is a compilation of today’s modern rock. Some bands have established a pretty steady following, while others are still really young acts.
Feeder – “Feeling A Moment”
A good opening track with inspired melodies and soaring vocals.
Jack’s Mannequin – “The Mixed Tape”
Fans of Something Corporate will enjoy this song from Andrew McMahon’s angsty side project Jack’s Mannequin, which happens to be the first single and music video for Friends With Benefit. Jack’s Mannequin’s lead singer (McMahon) is also a cancer survivor.
Audioslave – “Be Yourself”
You’ve probably heard this on the radio and it sounds a lot like Chris Cornell in his Soundgarden days and less like Rage Against The Machine. Unlike a lot of emo rock, Audioslave brings a genuine sound as if they can back up their words.
Nada Surf – “Always Love”
A slight touch of melancholy that leaves you hunkering to wax the poetic.
Gavin DeGraw – “Jealous Guy”
A new version of John Lennon’s “Jealous Guy” and it’s actually pretty good. I say that as someone who normally can’t listen to Gavin DeGraw.
Citizen Cope – “Son’s Gonna Rise”
This is that entirely-too-catchy-to-be-good-for-you song from that Pontiac commercial. There is some actual lyrical content to match the catchy beats, making this one of my favorite tracks on the album.
Hot Hot Heat – “Middle of Nowhere”
This Canadian band has a very loud and loyal fan base. And while I am not a Hot Hot Heat fan, this is definitely a fun listen with a unique voice.
Tyler Hilton – “Missing You”
Behind one of those billed as a teen heartthrob is a raw voice. This is a mediocre song and probably the weakest on the album.
Mozella – “Light Years Away”
A hauntingly beautiful and soothing voice expressing some unrefined emotions.
Shout Out Louds – “Please Please Please”
A strangely fun song pleading a lover to come back, pretty transparent but enjoyable nonetheless.
Fall Out Boy – “I’ve Got A Dark Alley…”
A catchy tune with painful undertones, but not so much so that it is painful to listen to.
Jimmy Eat World – “23″
An epic ballad with a huge arrangement, at just over seven minutes long, “23” is the longest track on Friends With Benefit.
Haley James Scott – “Halo”
I’ve always thought it hokey when a tv show lets a character play their songs, but with Haley it actually works. This song is pretty decent too.
Michelle Featherstone – “Coffee & Cigarettes”
A pretty song about being blue, it is minimalist in its approach with piano accompanying the sad vocals.
Strays Don’t Sleep “For Blue Skies”
A slow, pretty song.