Anyone who’s seen even one episode of ‘The Sopranos‘ can tell you that music played a big part in setting the mood and underscoring key scenes. Everyone from Beethoven to the Temptations to Britney Spears was part of ‘The Sopranos’ playlist. But mob boss Tony Soprano and his crew listened to a lot of music from their younger days, so plenty of 1960s and 1970s rock classics were heard on the show during its six-season run.
These are the Top ‘Sopranos’ Songs.
‘Undercover of the Night’
Christopher, the youngest member of Tony’s inner crew, is engaged to Adriana, who has been nabbed by the FBI. She soon begins spilling secrets about the family. In the episode ‘Rat Pack’ from the fifth season, she sinks deeper and deeper into her role as an informant. She almost confesses her treachery one night, but the very next morning she’s back at the FBI office, giving away even more secrets. The camera pans away and the machine-gun rhythm of the Stones’ 1983 hit fills the air.
Van Morrison’s ‘Moondance’ cut plays a huge part in the episode ‘All Due Respect,’ the final episode from the series’ fifth season. It can be heard in a few different scenes — sometimes as background music, another time as a key moment before a character is killed. (The song also plays over the episode’s end credits.) A line from the song — “And we’ll send you glad tidings from New York” — hits perfectly.
In a key episode from the show’s first season (titled ‘Down Neck’), Tony recalls his childhood and the moment he first discovered that his family was in the mafia. Popping a Prozac triggers memories, which are accompanied by Jefferson Airplane’s perennial tripped-out classic ‘White Rabbit.’ The 1967 hit also plays over the episode’s end credits.
‘I Feel Free’
Cream In the penultimate episode of ‘The Sopranos” terrific first season, someone tries to kill Tony, who escapes the bloody skirmish with minor injuries. Throughout the story, he sees a young woman, who turns out to be a hallucination brought on by the lithium prescribed by his psychiatrist. As Tony flushes the pills down the toilet, a liberating act, the closing credits appear, with Cream’s 1966 song playing.
‘Don’t Stop Believin”
Tony loved Journey. Their songs appeared in ‘The Sopranos’ several times over the show’s six seasons. But the most powerful comes in the very last scene of the series’ final episode. As Tony and his family sit down for a meal in a small diner, the song begins to play, and suddenly the most mundane images — somebody parking a car, a man getting up to use the bathroom — take on more menacing connotations. What happens next? We’ll never know. The frame turns black as Journey continue to play. It’s the greatest ending to any TV show ever, and for one week in 2007, ‘Don’t Stop Believin” was the coolest song in the world.