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Spaulding
For all of the complaints about this year’s Oscar ceremony, producers Brian Grazer and Don Mischer deserve some credit for bringing Pharrell Williams onboard to freshen up the sounds of the telecast.

Williams was, ahem, instrumental in tapping Grammy winner Esperanza Spaulding to perform, resulting in a beautiful rendition of  Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World” to accompanying the In Memoriam segment of the show.

The multitalented Spaulding not only sings, she plays double bass and writes music. In fact, she’s one of the artists featured on a new compilation of music centered around Academy Award-winning composer Hans Zimmer’s theme for this year’s Oscar telecast, which is now available on the iTunes Store.

“The 84th Academy Awards — Celebrate the Music” collection includes the show’s musical theme plus six unique, inventive interpretations of the theme by other artists, including Spaulding’s vocals accompanying the choral rendition of “What a Wonderful World.”

In addition to both of the 84th Academy Awards music directors, Zimmer and Pharrell William, the group of international artists who contributed their talents includes: frummer/composer Sheila E.; guitarist/composer Stephane Wrembel; three-time Oscar-winning composer Giorgio Moroder; two-time Oscar winning composer/musician A.R. Rahman; violin/cello virtuosi Ann Marie Calhoun and Martin Tillman; Dutch hit remixer/composer/electronic musician Junkie XL; and multiple Grammy-winning British musician/producer Peter Asher.

Each musician created their own piece of music inspired by or derived from Zimmer’s basic thematic framework. The compilation of these unique interpretations of the theme is available for download now at itunes.com/oscar.