Exploring The 60s Music Featured in ‘Stranger Things’

The Duffer Brothers’ hit series, ‘Stranger Things’, masterfully intertwines the supernatural with the nostalgia of the ’80s. From the haunting melodies of Joy Division to the synth-pop beats of The Clash, each song is a deliberate choice, transporting viewers to an era long past. Check out the 60s music featured in ‘Stranger Things.’

Should I Stay or Should I Go’ by The Clash: ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go’ by The Clash takes centre stage as the defining song of the first season. Not only does it remain a timeless classic, but it also shows the unbreakable bond between Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) and Will (Noah Schnapp).

Every Breath You Take’ by The Police: It’s quite interesting how a song’s tone can swiftly shift from cheerful to ominous, as was the case with ‘Every Breath You Take’ by The Police in the season two finale. Initially, the tune hinted at brighter days for our beloved characters, marking a return to normalcy. The first kiss shared by Mike and Eleven, Max and Lucas dancing, and Dustin’s stylish transformation all seemed promising. However, a dark twist emerged as we were abruptly transported to the foreboding Upside Down, revealing the continued presence of the menacing Mind Flayer. 

Rock You Like a Hurricane’ by The Scorpions: ‘Stranger Things’ has a knack for character introductions like no other. It’s all about the music. Take Billy Hargrove, for instance. When he burst onto the scene, ‘Rock You Like a Hurricane’ by The Scorpions was blaring. It’s like they knew he’d shake things up in Hawkins, not in a good way. The song perfectly captures his wild energy, and, in hindsight, hinted at the brewing storm of trouble he’d bring to the town.

You Don’t Mess Around With Jim’ by Jim Croce: Jim Hopper, portrayed by David Harbour, is far from the picture of composure. His tendency to lose his cool over the slightest provocation is well-documented, and it’s not a pretty sight when his anger flares up. But, there’s a moment when Hopper breaks character, gleefully singing along to ‘You Don’t Mess Around With Jim’ by Jim Croce. It’s a delight to watch. 

Heroes’ by Peter Gabriel: ‘Heroes’ by Peter Gabriel holds a special place in the hearts of ‘Stranger Things’ fans, as it has become the Duffer Brothers’ go-to song for the most heartbreaking moments in the series. The track has been used twice, each time evoking a flood of emotions from the audience. 

Master of Puppets’ by Metallica: In Season Four, Eddie Munson, played by Joseph Quinn, emerged as the standout new character. This rock-and-roll-loving d**g dealer quickly won the hearts of fans, thanks to his close bond with Dustin and a compelling character arc. In a heroic act, Eddie sacrificed himself to protect Dustin, but not before unleashing a jaw-dropping guitar solo. Armed with just his guitar, he flawlessly played Metallica’s ‘Master of Puppets,’ drawing the attention of the Demobats and setting the stage for Steve, Nancy and Robin to launch their attack on Vecna. 

Running Up That Hill’ by Kate Bush: Decades after its initial release, ‘Running Up That Hill’ by Kate Bush resurfaced in 2022, claiming the top spot on the charts. This resurgence can be attributed to its prominent role in the show’s penultimate season, where it became inseparable from Max’s courageous struggle to break free from Vecna’s clutches. The moment Max employs the haunting melody of ‘Running Up That Hill’ to escape Vecna’s lair and reunite with her friends is undeniably one of the series’ best scenes. 

Dream a Little Dream of Me’ by Ella Fitzgerald And Louis Armstrong: In ‘Chapter Four: Dear Billy,’ Creel recounts his chilling encounter with Vecna, where a surprising twist unfolds. The power of music, Ella Fitzgerald’s ‘Dream A Little Dream of Me,’ played a vital role in helping him escape Vecna’s grasp

Hazy Shade of Winter’ by The Bangles: Barbara Holland, portrayed by Shannon Purser, made a lasting impact on the first season of ‘Stranger Things’. In her final episode, the haunting notes of The Bangles’ 1987 rendition of Simon & Garfunkel’s ‘A Hazy Shade of Winter’ played during the credits.

White Rabbit’ by Jefferson Airplane: ‘White Rabbit’ by Jefferson Airplane aligns perfectly with Dr. Brenner’s enigmatic government work due to its psychedelic, mind-bending quality and its lyrical hints at d**g use, government secrecy, and the intriguing concept of the Upside Down.

-Britney Jones