The Great Gatsby

This episode of Tape on Book we take on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s study of the hypocrisy, impossibility, and failure of the American Dream (fun stuff, right?). Booze, cars, bootlegging, dancing, parties, wealth, and heartache…what more could you ask for?

Like giant fading eyes on an ophthalmologist’s billboard, the mix watches over you here.

Nick Carraway: Yesterday is Here – Tom Waits
A moral-ish, vanilla country kid moves to New York and finds himself corruptingly surrounded empty miserable materialistic people…essentially every NYC story ever.

Tom Buchanan: High Society – Enon
FSF creates the blueprint for every 80s teen movie rich bully preppie villain. Where is Ralph Macchio when you need him?

Daisy Buchanan: If You Got The Money – Lefty Frizzell
Now I ain’t saying she’s a gold digger…well, yes, I suppose I am.

The Parties: Party Out of Bounds – B-52s
Just once I would like to go to a extravagant flapper mansion party where Fred Schneider bursts in whilst inquiring about the fridge situation. Now that is the real American Dream!

Owl Eyes: Blank Generation – Richard Hell and the Voidoids
I remember my English teacher saying this guy was FSF’s representation of the Lost Generation.  I mostly just think it was cool that he was trying to sober up by lounging around a library (that doesn’t work, by the way).

Jay Gatsby: You Only Live Twice – Nancy Sinatra
Okay, yeah, so I totally cribbed this from Mad Men. But it is really only fair since Don Draper is pretty much a rip off Gatsby. Basically, they’re the same dude. Well, except one can’t live without one woman and one can’t live with one woman.

Jordan Baker: Liar, Liar – The Castaways
…with your lady-golfing pants on fire.  Really Nick, I know you might prefer the masculine sort (wink), but is the best we can do?

Myrtle Wilson: Delilah – Tom Jones
This lady is several shades of crazy with just the right dash of mean as hell. You kind of get the feeling that FSF may have met a few ladies like this in his life who he wished he could run over with a car.

Daisy’s Child: I’m A Stranger Here – Lambchop
“Wait! I still have a child?”

The Green Light at the End of the Dock: I Want You – Elvis Costello
Hands down the best “I TOTALLY LOVE YOU/I TOTALLY HATE YOU” song ever. Unfortunately, it won’t likely be used in the upcoming Baz’s adaption which I fear is going to be one of those horrific singing movies again.

Daisy and Gatsby Together Again: Do You Remember the First Time? – Pulp
You ever hear that Woody Allen 60’s bit about how he was hanging out with Scott and Zelda in Paris? While discussing Gatsby, Woody told FSF that he didn’t need to write Great Expectations because Charles Dickens had already wrote it. So, Hemingway punches him in the face. Yeah, I guess that lost something in translation.

“Can’t repeat the past? Why of course you can!”: Summer Days – Bob Dylan

Meyer Wolfsheim: Gangsters -The Specials
“I am Mr. Wolfsheim. I solve problems. Nick, I thought I smelled some coffee back there would you make me a cup? Lots of cream. Lots of sugar.”

Daisy Decides: Best of Both Worlds – Scott Walker
Old money? New money? West Egg? East Egg? Who cares as long as there are money and eggs involved….am I right?

The Car Accident: Car Trouble – Adam & the Ants
Okay, “a little car trouble” might be an understatement when you are describing running over your husband’s lover and then letting your wannabe lover take the blame. But I am pretty sure that is precisely how Daisy really felt about all of it.

George Wilson: Pardon Me, I’ve Got Someone to Kill – Johnny Paycheck
A sad redneck song for a sad redneck dude. Cuckolded, confused, and packing heat is almost always a recipe for disaster.

The Funeral: I Hope It Rains At My Funeral – Tom T. Hall
Truly could second as a bio-song from Gatsby…Born poor. Work hard. Fall in love. Get nowhere. Make money. Fall back in love. Get nowhere. Get killed. And then no one shows up at your funeral.

Nick Leaves/The Ending: Hit the Ground Running – Smog
In the end, I guess sometimes the best thing you can do is leave and remake yourself…again and again and again. You’d either eventually get it right or get so good at changing that you’d never need to.


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