Netflix´s ´Stranger Things´ and ´The Get Down´

Not content with owning our screens and weekends and late night marathons, Netflix´s plan of world domination is now coming after our ears, bringing us 2 series that are not only highly addictive, but which have brought to the small screen (is the computer screen also a small screen?) the soundtracks of the year.

The Get Down

This musical television series tells the story of the death of disco and the rise of hip hop in the late seventies in New York. Created by Baz Luhrmann  it is very influenced by his aesthetics, and if you don’t like his previous projects there is a chance you will not like this. For those that do it´s a thrilling incursion into the ghetto of the South Bronx.

The way he links reality and fiction, through music, images, graffiti, and the character´s story, is an experience that should not be missed. It´s not only Luhrmann´s vision, but his collaboration with Oscar winner and spouse Catherine Martin, and executive producer Nas (who also provides his rapping skills at the start of every episode), as well as the legendary Grandmaster Flash in an executive producer’s role, and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis who together with upcoming actors (Shameik Moore, Justice Smith, Herizen Guardiola and Jaden Smith among others) and renowned talents like Jimmy Smit, Kevin Corrigan and Giancarlo Esposito take us to a New York that shaped the music all of us listen to now.

The Soundtrack includes tracks from the actors, Donna Summer, Miguel, Hector Lavoe, Cristina Aguilera, Michael Kiwanuka, and an array of genres. It’s available on I tunes and Spotify and its hard to pick a song but I chose one I just can’t get out of my head since we saw the series.

WILD IN THE STREETS – GARLAND JEFFREYS

 

Stranger Things

This series taps into powerful elements: it is science fiction, and also a horror series but one that those of us who are adverse to terror can tolerate, it’s set in the early 1980s (always a good decade for, let´s face it, anything) and it has a vibe that is like a mix of Stand by Me, E.T. the Extraterrestrial and The Goonies set to an original score reminiscent of Daft Punk. And,  as if that were not appealing enough, it stars Wynona Ryder.

Created, written and directed by Matt and Ross Duffer and Shawn Lavy as executive producer, it takes us on 8 episodes of horror mixed with nostalgia and good acting (did I mentioned Matthew Modine´s role?) that keeps us on the edge of our seat, wanting on the one hand for it to end, but on the other for the start of the new season. The soundtrack is great and the songs featured are perfectly chosen. In a way, the song I have chosen to post is a character of the series, so here goes:

The Clash – Should I Stay or Should I Go

The fact that Netflix (the equivalent now of what HBO was in the 90s) is making shows that feature good music gives me hope for the future, because teens today will listen and will want to explore, and that is how many of us get into music, from TV shows and movies. We loved the song, we went and found it, and it opened doors to another world. Kudos Netflix and keep the soundtracks coming.

 

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