A couple of days ago, the Hollywood Music in Media Awards announced the nominees for music in film, TV, video games, commercials and trailers.
The HMMA nominations have historically been representative of the nominees of other key awards shows that occur months later. With over 500 submissions this year, HMMA nominees are chosen in specific genres of music for film, TV and video game including dramatic feature, sci-fi/ fantasy, documentary and animation. They represent music for visual media from around the world.
This year, a song from Sherlock Gnomes, written by Elton and Bernie Taupin, is among the contenders.
It's been nominated for Original Song- Animated Film, and was performed by Mary J. Blige. Also in this category are Finally Free from Smallfoot; Good Day from Early Man; and I Promise You, from Peter Rabbit.
Elton told Yahoo Entertainment that coming up with the sassy soul number, Stronger Than I Ever Was, was a challenge for him and Bernie Taupin. However, thanks to Blige’s personal connection to the empowerment anthem’s lyrics, everything came together.
“It worked out incredibly, because I knew it was going to be Mary J., so I had that in mind when I wrote the melody,” revealed the composter. “The words, ironically enough, when she did the track in Los Angeles, she’d just come through a breakup with her husband.”
He added that he and Bernie haven't written a song like this before.
''We knew it was going to have an uptown-funky vibe on it. I said, ‘I’ve got to write this song for Mary J. Blige, play me something!’ So they played current music, and he and I had to write a kind of R&B-type thing for her to sing. It’s not the sort of song I would normally write for myself.”
When Blige and John entered the recording studio, it was clear that the tune was perfect for his friend.
“She said, ‘This is the easiest song for me to sing, because it just hits the nail on the head what I’m going through.’ It was very strange, that — she sang it in 10 minutes. I mean, she just gave it a roll, because she was going through that,” recalled Elton.