Movie Music

UPDATED: Gatsby-Mania: 5 Songs for the New Great Gatsby Soundtrack

UPDATED to correct Daisy with Myrtle Wilson in item No. 2.

F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby is the greatest novel ever written that everyone had to read in high school. And now it's going to be the greatest movie ever made that everyone will have to watch, supposedly out in May, because Leonardo DiCaprio is in it. It's in 3D for some reason too, even though there's not one single action scene in the entire book.

Since this movie is going to be a big deal, the producers have decided to do a big-deal soundtrack release with it, complete with original songs from Prince and Lady Gaga and Jay-Z & Kanye's "No Church in the Wild." To be honest, they sound like perfect picks, considering the subject matter of the book and film (yuppies partying and love triangles). But it got us thinking: What songs are already out there that the producers could use for scenes in the movie?

Obviously, spoilers for the book are going to follow here. So if you somehow escaped high school without reading it, look away.

5. Rockwell, "Somebody's Watching Me"

One of the prominent themes in the book is the fact that the eyes of a giant billboard for an ophthalmologist named Dr. T.J. Eckleburg constantly seem to be watching the characters. No doubt this will make for a striking image in the movie.

Given the paranoia the eyes seem to inspire in the narrator character of Nick Carraway, we felt this one was appropriate to match his feelings, repeatedly expressed throughout the novel.

4. DMX, "Party Up"

In 1925, F. Scott Fitzgerald could never have predicted the rise of a party anthem such as one by DMX. This was the jazz age! But for a modern Gatsby movie, what could be a better song for the great parties Gatsby holds?

Plus, we just really want to see Leo dancing to this. Especially if he does it with this look on his face.

3. Pearl Jam, "Last Kiss"

Perhaps the most striking (no pun intended) scene of the movie will be when Tom Buchanan's mistress, Myrtle Wilson, is struck down by a car driven by Tom's wife Daisy. "Car crash" songs are, weirdly, make up an entire genre, and were especially popular in the '50s. But we felt like Pearl Jam's cover of the Wayne Cochran original really just sums up the whole "car crash song" genre and would fit great with the scene, in tone and sound.

2. The Crystals, "He Hit Me (And It Felt Like a Kiss)"

One scene in the book that will be particularly controversial on the screen (if they even choose to use it) is when Tom Buchanan snaps at his wife Daisy Myrtle, prompting him to punch her and break her nose. Given that the book was written in 1925, this isn't treated as anything particularly abnormal and Daisy Myrtle doesn't view Tom harshly for it afterward. In fact, it passes and is never really mentioned again.

We almost went with a Chris Brown song here, but this old Phil Spector hit seemed to sum up Daisy's POV in the book fairly well.

1. The Police, "Every Breath You Take"

One of the central themes of the book is the fact that Gatsby has been pursuing the love of Daisy for years on end, with the singular goal of being with her in mind. I'm not sure F. Scott meant it this way, but it's actually very creepy. Gatsby talks about having read newspapers wherever he knew she was living in the hopes she would be in them, and when she was, cutting out the articles about her and saving them in a scrapbook.

Sounds like a stalker, and Sting's legendary stalker anthem will suffice very well to be played in the background in the film while Leo-Gatsby is recounting his bizarre obsession with Daisy.

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Corey Deiterman