The long wait is finally over. Mad Men is back on the air, and we’ve done our best to compile every single song used throughout the series so far, all the way up through Season 4 episode 1. We’ve had some help, because there have been two official soundtracks released by AMC, who also maintain great running song lists on their website. We’ve used those lists as a guide to create our exclusive “unofficial” playlist, which includes all 39 songs used throughout the first three seasons that have not yet landed on an official soundtrack.
Below you will find streamers for five different sources of Mad Men related music: the newest songs from Season Four (which will be updated weekly for the remainder of Season Four), the two official soundtracks, the massive unofficial playlist and a special Mad Men Pandora channel created by Pandora Radio. The Pandora channel doesn’t play songs directly from the show per se, but plays other great songs from the same era. Clicking album art reveals album streamers, the following links can help navigate around the post, and that’s just about everything you need to know. Now click onward and enjoy the ultimate soundtrack for your Sunday night Mad Men viewing parties.
Episode 13 – Tomorrowland: Say what you will about the 4th season finale, you know you weren’t expecting the outcome and at the very least it supplied us with a healthy dose of new tunes. The first song used in the episode played when Don jumped into the pool with his kids. The Tri-Lites – Hot Dog, Here He Comes starts playing as Don jumps the shark (his son, Bobby, who proclaimed he was going to be a shark in the pool – relax). This song was incredibly hard to find by the way. Later in the episode when Don and the family are at the diner, Shirley Ellis’ – The Name Game can be heard playing in the background. Finally, as the season wrapped up and the credits started rolling, Sonny & Cher’s – I Got You Babe played us out. That’s it for the Season 4! Keep this link handy, because I’ll attempt to do the same thing for Season 5 when it eventually starts up. Thanks for reading!
Episode 12 – Blowing Smoke: Only one song was used in this fantastic latest episode. Etta James – Trust In Me was perfectly executed as the credits rolled. I really wish the season wasn’t ending next week!
Episode 11 – Chinese Wall: Busy episode this week. In the very first scene, a song is playing in the car with Peggy, Joyce and Abe. It’s playing faintly in the background and I haven’t had a chance to use more advanced techniques just yet. Check back here soon for that first song. Later in the episode, when Roger comes home to Jane and she hands him a copy of his book, some classical music is playing. I’ve added Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concierto No. 1 by Sviatoslav Richter to the playlist. At the end credits, Jim Reeves – Welcome to my World plays out. This has also been added to the playlist.
Episode 10 – Hands and Knees: Lots of David Carbonara score this week, and the only piece of previously recorded music was featured at the end of the episode. The song used in the outro was an instrumental cover of a Beatles track. Santo & Johnny – Do You Want To Know A Secret? has been added to the playlist (big thanks to reader Lina for the tip). I would also add the original to the playlist if there were any Beatles music on Grooveshark, but unfortunately for us, there isn’t. You can listen to The Beatles version via YouTube right here.
Episode 9 – The Beautiful Girls: Tough break this week. Two non-score songs were used, both in the scene where Peggy and Abe are talking at the bar. The first song was easy to find. Petula Clark – I Know a Place has been added to the playlist. The episode cuts away from this scene, and when it returns later on, a different song is playing. I’ve had no luck finding this song. It contains lyrics that go something along the lines of take a look and let me know how I feel. The chorus repeats the phrase Lonely Girls over and over again. Google has no useful information on this, just a handful of other people trying to identify the same song. I’ll keep searching on this one. To make up for it, I’ve also added Petula Clark – Downtown, which was Stan’s classy lesbian anthem for Peggy and Joyce.
Episode 8 – The Summer Man: This episode featured what is probably the least obscure song ever used in a Mad Men episode. However, it’s timing was impeccable, since the song was released a few weeks before the episode takes place (confirmed by the date in Don’s diary). The Rolling Stones – (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction has been added to the playlist. Once again, some ancient, unidentifiable music is playing at Henry’s house during Gene’s birthday. I’ve pretty much given up trying to identify music that plays while Henry is onscreen.
Episode 7 – The Suitcase: The only song used in this episode came at the very end. Simon & Garfunkel – Bleecker Street has been added to the playlist.
Episode 6 – Waldorf Stories: Only one new song this week. Skeeter Davis – Ladder of Success plays as flashback Don and Roger ride the elevator up to the office and into the credits. It’s a catchy little tune that was fairly appropriate considering the episode’s subject matter.
Episode 5 – The Chrysanthemum and the Sword: Great episode this week, but not much identifiable music. New score was used alongside two songs, but I could only find one of those songs (but reader Ben correctly identified the second!). The first song played on the radio in the background of Henry and Betty’s house as Don brought the kids home. The following lyrics can be heard: Wind on my face, a distant horizon followed by some inaudible lyrics, followed by in the valley of the shadow that I-, before Henry turns the radio off. This song was recently identified by our awesome reader Ben as Lost Weekend Western Swing Band – In The Valley of the Shadow. This track is much newer than the show implies (recorded some time this decade), and apparently it was also used in the game Fallout: Lost Vegas. The second song played as the credits rolled and was much easier to find. I’ve added Doris Day – I Enjoy Being a Girl to the playlist. This song was more than appropriate after Sally’s recent sexual awareness.
Episode 4 – The Rejected: Not a lot of new music this week. Peggy attends a party with Joyce, and Brave New World – Signed D.C. can be heard playing in the background. This is an interesting choice of music, considering both the original version and this cover version were released in 1966, and this episode takes place on and around February 28th, 1965. At the end credits, some more David Carbonara score plays.
Episode 3 – The Good News: This episode begins and ends with David Carbonara score. But in between, we are treated with three new songs for the week. Two songs are played consecutively during the scene at the bar with Anna, Stephanie and Don (Dick). The first song that plays in the background is Jan and Dean – Sidewalk Surfin’. This song was immediately followed by Stephanie’s slow dance jukebox request: Patti Page – Cape Cod Bay. Later in the episode, Don and Laine get hammered and meet up with some “lady friends”. A singer-songwriter named Rudy Jenson comes to the stage and performs The Animals – The House of the Rising Sun. Don jokingly tells the particularly gullible lady friend that Laine wrote this song, which is a joke in and of itself, since The House of the Rising Sun is a folk ballad with no known author. All three songs have been added to the playlist.
Episode 2 – Christmas Comes But Once a Year: This was a relatively tough week for Mad Men music. There were at least 3 distinct jazzy Christmas songs played at the office Christmas party, but I wasn’t able to identify any of them. I suspect at least one of these songs is new David Carbonara score for this season. A musical hint was hidden in this episode, even though the song was never played. During the Christmas party, Joey changes records on the record player. For a brief moment, you can read the artist and song title on the record in his hands. This was that brief moment. The record reads: The Marcels – Goodbye to Love. Towards the end of the episode, Teresa Brewer – I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus plays during the final scenes and into the credits. Thanks a million to Jackie for finding the correct artist on this one! Both songs are now featured in the playlist.
Episode 1 – Public Relations: I’ve included a comedy bit from 1951 which should provide some context to the “John… Marsha” routine that Peggy and Joey repeatedly reference. During the Thanksgiving dinner scene, a song is quietly playing in the background. The lyrics are awfully hard to hear over the characters dialogue; I can only make out what I think is the line “I love you so, more than you know”. I have no leads on this song, so any help would be appreciated. Nashville Teens – Tobacco Road played as the credits rolled.
I was entirely unaware that the theme song to the show (A Beautiful Mine) was actually a 6 minute RJD2 track. Very cool to say the least. Some other memorable songs are found on this volume, including some of the excellent score composed by David Carbonara. I reccomend Mad Men Suite, On the Street Where you Live, and the eerie Babylon.
Volume 2 is definitely a solid set of songs. Congratualtions Honey, How Mable Get Sable Cha Cha Cha, Telstar and Let’s Twist Again all stand out. I’m not a Decemberists fan by any means, and while The Infanta may seem a little out of place considering it was released 4 decades after most of these other songs, I must say that it has grown on me quite a bit since I’ve started listening to this soundtrack.
Editors note here: One of the most important songs in terms of the season 3 plotline was Ann Margret’s Bye Bye Birdie. This song was not up on Grooveshark, so I had snagged a copy from Youtube and uploaded it. Long story short, the volume was way too low, and I couldn’t delete the version I had uploaded and replace it with another with the same name. So I had to get creative and name it something entirely different to get it to upload again. If you’re looking for Bye Bye Birdie, you’ll find it towards the bottom, labelled as: Catch Ya Later Lil Birdie Guy by Annabella Margarita. And you may be familiar with other verions of Sukiyaki, but do not miss the original by Kyu Sakamoto.
As you can see, this playlist is massive. The songs are arranged in the order that they appeared in the episodes, excluding the songs that are on the official soundtracks.
Here are the lists for reference: ( Season 1 | Season 2 | Season 3 ). Enjoy!
This is something experimental that we haven’t yet done before. It may take a little bit longer to load than the other streamers, but we’ve only had positive results on our end. Let us know in the comments if you have any problems with this channel. Like I said before, the songs here haven’t necessarily been used in the show, but they are from the same time period and often set the same mood as the songs actually used in the show. Pandora users may find this to be handy for future Mad Men viewing parties, but we encourage you to make your way through the other three playlists that feature songs actually used in the show before getting too hooked here.