If a cable network asked me to come up with a concept for a TV series, I’d come up with something like Boardwalk Empire, which will debut its third season starting this weekend. It’s about organized crime and classic real life gangsters, it’s produced by Martin Scorsese, it stars Steve Buscemi, and it’s a period piece. In fact, the effort HBO makes to place it in a proper era context is a big part of the show’s charm for me. And a significant part of their effort is that they go out of their way to use actual music from the Roaring 20s. It’s a neat trick. Here are some of my favorite songs that have been featured on Boardwalk Empire.
The Japanese Sandman
I’ll See You in Cuba
It’s tough to play favorites with these songs but this one is my favorite because it’s so spot-on for what was going on in the show at the time, and what was going on in the era. It appeared as Jimmy was leaving on a train for Chicago.
Alice Blue Gown
Life’s a Funny Proposition
Warning- the song/youtube clip is a spoiler for the end of season 1.
After You Get What You Want
What makes this song so great in terms of the show is the way they used it in the season 2 trailers, and of course how it worked as an echo for Nucky’s situation as the feds descended upon him.
It’s hard to talk about season 2 without thinking of Jimmy’s flashbacks, which include his service as a soldier. And no song epitomizes World War I service more than this one.
When the Dew is Falling
I’m the Guy