I’m not ready to talk about the episode yet (though there is a spoiler at the very end of this post), but to tide you over, here are the listings for the CDs I made as party favors for our series finale party.
I didn’t mean to end up with two discs. It just happened. When I realized I had two hours worth of songs, I decided to divide them up by the two girls. Our first disc is the Rory disc, with songs relating to her and her friends, and the second disc is the Lorelai disc. Because I am a sap, it mostly relates to Luke. Also, do YOU remember any good songs relating to Max, Christopher, or Jason? I certainly don’t.
For every song that was included, there was a Sonic Youth, a Modest Mouse, some Sparks, some Pixies, some Bowie, some Metallica, even U2 . . . that didn’t make the cut. It’s already two discs, people. I had to make some decisions.
My most controversial decision was not to include the theme song. After seven seasons, I must confess that I am tired of the theme song and fast-forward (thank you, TiVo) past it every week. I included another Carole King song instead. You are welcome to make your own CDs including the song, MELISSA. I just couldn’t do it.
Anyway. I thoroughly enjoyed the trip down memory lane as I researched songs to include, remembering scenes and songs that are so much of the reason I love that show.
Disc 1: Rory
1. “How to Dream” by Sam Phillips – Welcome to Stars Hollow. You know the strummy la-las, you love the strummy la-las. Does this one need a reason?
2. “I Try” by Macy Gray – This one plays during the pilot episode when Lorelai and Rory fight about Dean, then Rory puts it on in her room and Lorelai puts it on in the living room. I always love that scene. I thought about cutting this one, but, in the end, I’m glad I left it in.
3. “Fade Into You” by Mazzy Star – Rory and Dean have their first dance. Remember what the show used to be like back then?
4. “Oh My Love” by John Lennon – This song plays when Dean shows Rory the car he built for her and tells her that he loves her.
5. “Satellite of Love” by Lou Reed – Some of the songs I had to look up, but this is one I can never forget. This is the song that plays when (ahem) Dean came over to . . . borrow something from Rory. I really like the song, though.
6. “Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Days of Summer” by Nat King Cole – If you could get this song out of your head after the season 3 premiere, you are a better person than I am.
7.”Girl from Mars” by Ash – I’m trying to give all of Rory’s boyfriends air time. Remember that time Jess stole a book from Rory’s room and then wrote in it and then gave it back to her? Yeah, this is the song that played when they engaged in the cute book talk. It’s not going to make me forget that he wrote in her book, though.
8. “Lily-A-Passion” by Grant Lee Phillips – Grant Lee Phillips is the Troubadour, and I love his music. This is my favorite of his songs, hands down. How can you not love a song that includes the line, “She’s a piratey soul full of vinegar and glitter?” (That is totally my goal in life, by the way.) This song could have gone either Rory or Lorelai, because it plays in the season 4 finale when Rory is walking to the diner and also in Sniffy’s Tavern when Luke and Lorelai have their first date. How it could be on the speakers/radio in Sniffy’s Tavern was never ultimately explained. Did the Troubadour get a record deal? Am I over thinking this? Anyway, I think of Rory walking past the Troubadour when I hear this, so it’s on her disc.
9. “Legal Man” by Belle & Sebastian – Rory has a Belle & Sebastian t-shirt that she mentions when she’s in college (it got thrown in the trash when she didn’t take it out of the dryer right away), so I knew I was going to include them. And then I did a little research and remembered that there was this whole story in one episode where Lane wanted the new B&S CD and Rory and Kirk and Michel coordinate to get it to her without Mrs. Kim finding out. While they are doing that, this song plays. Perfection
10. “Fell In Love With a Girl” by The White Stripes – Speaking of Lane, her band played this song in “Keg! Max!” That’s the episode in which Dean and Jess fought at the party. I wanted to be sure at least one Hep Alien cover made it on the CD. (The next episode is when Lorelai sang “Did You Ever Know That You’re My Hero” to Rory. But I left that song off this CD. Sorry.) Oh, also! The episode in which Lane and Zach got married was a painful one for me personally, as a Luke and Lorelai fan, but the wedding cake had a picture of them looking like the cover of The White Stripes’ last album. So of course The White Stripes had to be included.
11. “Science vs. Romance” by Rilo Kiley – Still speaking of Lane, when she’s considering dating Zach, she worries about how their relationship might affect their music, and plays Rory this Rilo Kiley song to compare the band before and after their breakup. I don’t love Rilo Kiley, but I do like some of their songs, and this one’s cute.
12. “Hollaback Girl” by Gil and Brian – I had to practically move heaven and earth to get a copy of this. Definitely my favorite moment from season 6 – a thing of beauty and a joy to behold, especially in a season that was desperately in need of some laughter. Special thanks to Brian for getting me a copy.
13. “So Says I” by The Shins – When Rory and Paris went on spring break, The Shins played at their nightclub. This is the song they played.
14. “The Laws Have Changed” by The New Pornographers – This band gets mentioned a lot. A lot. And this song also plays in the nightclub when Rory and Paris are on spring break.
15. “Starcrossed” by Ash – Well, here’s the deal. I was reading a site that had a lot of the music listed, and for this song, it said, “Rory and Marty sit on the bed and study.” I actually remember that scene, because I still love Marty, even if the last season made him kind of creepy. So I made a note to listen to this song, to see if I liked it. And I love it. And I love Marty. So I self-indulgently decided to include it.
16. “Don’t Sleep in the Subway” by Petula Clark – I started feeling guilty for not really having any Logan songs, especially after adding a Marty one. I have two theories on why I couldn’t come up with any. First, the sixth season had several episodes without anything but the regular Sam Phillips strummy la-las. Second, I don’t pay as much attention to the Logan scenes as maybe I should. This song is from Logan’s farewell party. British invasion! I tried to find something from the Quentin Tarantino party (these kids sure like theme parties!), but I have never seen a Quentin Tarantino movie, and I didn’t want to use that woo-hoo one.
17. “The Perfect Crime” by The Decemberists – I remember when this song played, because both Mike and I recognized it. This is a season 7 song, when Rory brought Lucy and Olivia over to Logan’s apartment.
18. “To Go Home” by M. Ward – This song plays in the bar when Rory and Paris are talking about their futures in “Just Like Riding a Bike.”
19. “If I Could Write” by Sam Phillips – This may be my favorite Sam Phillips song, and it’s in a great scene – the end of the season 5 premiere (“Say Goodbye to Daisy Miller”), when Rory’s going to the airport and Lindsay is making the roast for Dean. Lindsay breaks my heart. I wanted Sam Phillips to end Rory’s CD, but this isn’t the end. Proceed!
Disc 2: Lorelai
1. “Now and Forever” by Carole King – I couldn’t do “Where You Lead” because I am so over that song. But Carole King did need to be included, both for the theme song as for owning the music store and letting Lane practice on the drums. I thought this one had a Gilmore-appropriate sentiment.
2. “There She Goes” by Sixpence None the Richer – I am a fan of this song, and it was in the pilot, very first thing. A great beginning. Not that I saw the pilot until later. But that is not the point.
3. “My Darling” by Wilco – This one plays in “The Deer Hunters” when Lorelai and Rory fall asleep while Rory studies for the test. I can take or leave Wilco, but this song is very sweet.
4. “Walk Like an Egyptian” by The Bangles – When the girls went to the concert, this was the first song that played. This is my nod to 80s music. I left out . . . pretty much everything else that Lorelai references. She can make her own CDs. This is my version of things.
5. “I Can’t Get Started” by Ella Fitzgerald – From Sookie’s wedding. The saddest wedding march of all time. And extremely disappointing, in retrospect . . . don’t you wish it was true that Lorelai couldn’t get started with Christopher? Would have saved us all a lot of time.
6. “Ballerina” by Leona Naess – This wasn’t actually on the show, but they used it in some season 4 promos, and I thought the lyrics were so appropriate for what the show was trying to do then – the girls were both kind of lost without each other, Lorelai was learning how much she depended on Luke . . . “I didn’t think I needed you, but I need you now.” Plus, the song is just pretty.
7. “Tell Her What She Wants to Know” by Sam Phillips – Speaking of Luke, this plays in the season 4 premiere when Luke tells Lorelai that he married Nicole.
8. “Mona Lisa” by Grant Lee Phillips – The Troubadour plays at the Firelight Festival in “Nag Hammadi is Where They Found the Gnostic Gospels,” otherwise known as “the episode in which Jess comes back and Luke gets drunk (and then gives Lorelai the earrings that Liz made, but only after getting a handful of Barbie).” Such a pretty song.
9. “Reflecting Light” by Sam Phillips – Luke and Lorelai dance under the stars. You know it, you love it, you didn’t need me to tell you why I included it.
10. “Shh” by Frou Frou – Oh, how I watched the season 5 promos, desperate to know what was going to happen with Luke and Lorelai. This was when I still watched promos, obviously. This wasn’t a Luke and Lorelai one, actually – it featured Lorelai looking sad in the airport and saying, “You’re 19, you know what you’re doing.” But it’s still a Gilmore song to me.
11. “Wedding Bell Blues” by 5th Dimension – It’s only right for Emily to get a song, too, right? Here’s what played at her vow renewal.
12. “Smile” by Grant Lee Phillips – Here’s another classic Troubadour song, played at the end of an episode near the beginning of season 3 as Lorelai and Rory walked around the town.
13. “Amazing Glow” by The Pernice Brothers – Remember the season 6 finale? I know, I tried to block it out, too. Besides the plotline that shall not be named, there was also the troubadour thing, which was a fun concept, but, honestly, kind of sucked in execution. One of the troubadours was Joe Pernice, and he played this song, which is gorgeous. Don’t hate him just because of the Palladinos. (In that same episode, Sonic Youth played a song called “What a Waste” and I thought about including it and saying, “Commentary on season 6 and the resulting relationship with Christopher?” but I didn’t like the song. And bitterness isn’t my most becoming feature.)
14. “Eye of the Tiger” by Paul Anka – How could I not include a Paul Anka song? This one was actually featured on the show, too, during the Thanksgiving episode in season 6 (after Luke unsuccessfully tried to call April). Yay, Paul Anka!
15. “On the Radio” by Regina Spektor – One more promo song. I love this song, and it played during some season 7 promos featuring Lorelai and Rory being adorable together. So it’s in!
16. “Taking Pictures” by Sam Phillips – This song played right after Lorelai gave Luke the ultimatum and walked away. I don’t have anything else to say about it, but I do love it.
17. “I Will Always Love You” by Lorelai Gilmore – How can such a recent scene be included in one of my all-time favorites? I guess Lauren Graham is just that awesome. I was going to include Dolly, but . . . this one fit a little better. And it is the awesome.
18. “My Little Corner of the World” by Yo Le Tenga – This version of the song was at the end of the first season, when Rory told Dean she loved him and Max had just proposed to Lorelai. So much of the appeal of the show was the town itself, with its meetings and eccentric characters, and I wanted to close the mix by acknowledging that. This song (though performed by someone else) also plays at the end of the pilot episode, and it has long been my hope that the finale will mirror the pilot, with Lorelai and Rory in the diner. [Which, it did. And Luke was there. Love.]
Edited to add: I get a lot of hits from people looking for music from the show. The best site, IMO, is this one. I used their lists quite extensively when I was making these CDs.