We’ve collated a list of our favourite Stranger Things music moments and added a few more tracks that we think fit right in.
I’m not sure about you but I can hardly wait till tonight for the release of Stranger Things season 4 volume two! It’s been an intense and mind-blowing season and I think the hype Stranger Things had in Season 1, has been restored.
Music has been very powerful throughout the series, with a strong focus on this latest season. We’ve all been turned upside down by the iconic Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill used so dramatically in the scene where Max is running from Vecna. But let’s look at some characters and how music has been used to make iconic moments in the Stranger Things series as a whole.
Should I Stay or Should I Go – The Clash
This became an iconic anthem for season 1 for all those that were immediately drawn to the shows captivating characters and mesmerising plot. At the beginning of the show, brothers Jonathan and Will Byers bond over their love for music. Jonathan creates Will a mixtape and Will becomes obsessed with the song Should I Stay or Should I Go by The Clash.
The song is a motif throughout the season and would play during Will’s mission to keep safe and calm from the monster during his disappearance. We hear the song again in season 2 when Will is possessed by the mind flayer and his family and friends are trying to remind Will of happy memories as Johnathan blasts the song in an attempt to snap him out of it. I cannot listen to this song anymore without thinking of Stranger Things and the desperation and confusion of all the characters in that first season.
Other songs that would definitely be on Wills playlist:
Who’s That Girl? by the Eurythmics – I mean the lyrics “The language of love has left me stony grey tongue-tied and twisted at the price I’ve had to pay” would resonate with the heartache Will is going through.
Cat People Putting Out Fire by David Bowie – His song and vocals are incredibly camp and theatrical and Will would definitely get down to it.
Material Girl – Madonna
We love a girl’s day out in between destroying Demogorgons and mind flayers. Season 3 of Stranger Things was heavily focused on the mysterious events unfolding in the Starcourt Mall. There are lots of 80s aesthetics, fashion and music that follow the characters who are starting to grow up and experience teenage issues. So Max and Eleven decided to ditch Mike and Lucas who have been getting on their nerves and montage some outfits! The boys are also shopping and get embarrassed by bralettes and panties, classic young teenage shit. These iconic 80s looks that Eleven and Max are rocking are accompanied by none other than Madonna’s Material Girl. It’s a perfect 80s dream and you couldn’t use any other song.
Another song that would definitely be on Eleven and Max’s playlist (Songs for the girlies who are riddled with trauma):
Holding Out For A Hero by Bonnie Tyler – Can you imagine Eleven and Max running around and fighting off whatever monsters await them to this iconic song? I keep playing it in my mind.
You Don’t Mess Around with Jim – Jim Croe
At the start of season 2, Hopper wants to be there for El when he takes her to retreat in the cabin so she’s safe from harm. He wants to invite Eleven into his life, by sharing with her a song by an artist he loves. He lets himself go by being goofy and dancing to You Don’t Mess Around With Jim, allowing Eleven to know she is safe and free to be herself. A montage begins as they set up the area for her and he teaches her morse code and sets up some booby traps as the soulful soft tones of Croce dance around them.
Other songs that would definitely be on Hopper’s playlist:
Dancing in the Dark by Bruce Springsteen – Hopper would 100% embarrass El even by doing some dorky dad moves to this hit song but it would eventually make her laugh like our dad’s dorky jokes do.
Don’t You (Forget About Me) by Simple Minds- This is the song that Hopper would totally listen to when Eleven goes off on her own and starts her own life and he will cry his eyes out.
Never Surrender – Corey Hart
Never Surrender by Corey Hart is the song that introduces the beginnings of Eleven and Mike’s relationship in such a perfect cringe way. Mike sings along to the song in between kissing Eleven and you kinda hate watching it but it’s exactly what a kid his age would do. It’s hard to forget that these children in Stranger Things are actually children because they experience some unexplainable things. In this episode we see Hopper get protective of Eleven and start to dislike Mike because he is immature. It seems like Hopper also forgot that they are in their prime immature and just trying to be kids.
Other songs that would definitely be on Mike’s playlist:
She Sells Sanctuary by The Cult- This is the perfect song for an ending of an 80s movie, but usually, one that’s cheesy and about getting the girl in the end not about killing Vecna and having a telekinetic girlfriend, but that would make the song even cooler.
Moving In Stereo – The Cars
Moving In Stereo by The Cars is the song that plays when Billy walks in for his lift-guard shift and all the MILFS get themselves excited to be stared at by him. I don’t know about you but it’s literally bi-panic for me. Mrs Wheeler and Billy are just too hot to be on the screen at the same time. The new wave song has an ambient-sounding synth that is accompanied by the singer’s low vocals. The bass and drums dance around the instruments as Billy walks by Mrs Wheeler and flirts with her.
Other songs that would definitely be on Billy’s playlist:
People Are Strange by The Doors- Just picture Billy sitting in a dingy bar, having a cigarette and a whisky while this song plays, it’s ominous and mysterious.
Rapture by Blondie- Now if you were a character in Stranger Things and were attracted to Billy by any means, this is the song that would begin your heavy make-out scene.
My Bologna – Weird Al Yankovic
We can’t forget about Mr Clarke, although I don’t remember the last episode he was in. My Bologna is the Weird Al Yankovic parody of My Sharona. It plays in season 3, episode 2 when Joyce goes to Mr Clarke’s house to find out about the magnets. We’re introduced to Mr Clarke’s basement where he is seen painting a figurine. It is this song and his nerdy protective glasses that remind us that he loves passing the time with his own interesting hobbies.
Other songs that would definitely be on Mr Clarke’s playlist:
Stranger Things has given the world a new fascination for 80s music and aesthetics. It’s been exciting seeing the characters come to life and relate to each other and understand themselves through a variety of incredible 80s tunes. There are bound to be some more iconic music moments in the finale as the beloved characters figure out this Vecna thing.
Check out Happy’s Stranger Things playlist that consists of all the songs mentioned in this article, a perfect 80s playlist to listen to after watching the finale.