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Original Soundtrack From Season 1 of ‘Empire’

The hit music-biz soap gets a lukewarm companion album


EMPIRE: Hakeem (Bryshere Gray, L) and Jamal (Jussie Smollett, R) perform in the "Our Dancing Days" episode airing Wednesday, Feb. 18 (9:01-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2014 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Chuck Hodes/FOX


Where’s Cookie when you need her? This soundtrack for the hottest show on TV could use more of the beat-you-with-a-broomstick fire of Taraji P. Henson’s character. Instead, stars Jussie Smollett (Jamal) and Bryshere “Yazz” Gray (Hakeem) headline a spotty set of original tracks with production by music supervisor Timbaland and his protégé Jim Beanz. They give Smollett his own “Cry Me a River” in “Good Enough.” But underwhelming rapper Yazz gets the overblown “Power of the Empire.” Jennifer Hudson and Mary J. Blige make cameos, while Courtney Love — all bluesy hurt on “Walk Out on Me” — brings a little rock-star cred to the party.


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