It was a little over three years ago that Pharrell's "Happy" from Despicable Me 2 became the most infectious and inescapable song on the planet. Spreading happiness and hat memes worldwide, it was the rare type of crossover monster hit that seemed to become an earworm for everyone who came within earshot. Pharrell is poised to do it again with "Runnin'" and "Surrender" from the upcoming, unsung NASA scientist biopic Hidden Figures.
The main difference between these two new songs and "Happy" is that while the later was the reflection of the feel-good vibe of the Minions-laced family film, the Hidden Figures tracks pull from the sound of the '60s as well and allows the films' themes to surface in the lyrics. "Runnin'" has a certain overall jazziness to its sound, with themes of overcoming struggle, as well as some nods to space travel. Appropriate, considering that Hidden Figures tells the story of the black women whose mathematics were crucial to the success of the Apollo 11 mission. "Surrender," Pharrell's duet with Lalah Hathaway (daughter of Donny Hathaway) captures the vibe of the era as well.
Hidden Figures, starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe, is due out December 25. No word yet what Pharrell's other contributions to the soundtrack will sound like, but the prospect of a Pharrell/Janelle Monáe track has us excited.