March just can't come fast enough for me. I miss Mad Men something fierce, and season four left me with so many questions (I won't spoil anything if you haven't caught up, but man, could Betty have been more awful?).
I'm not the only one wishing that the show was back, as shows like Pan Am and the short-lived, oft-maligned The Playboy Club both aimed to attract the show's audience with sociopolitical themes and stylish '60s outfits. Sure, they fell short, but it wasn't for a lack of trying.
One thing the shows got right was turning to Phoenix-based Fervor Records for period-specific tunes to soundtrack the melodrama. In addition to putting out records by indie-electro act Super Stereo and rapper Tarik NuClothes, the label has worked with John Dixon, who owns the rights to the master tapes of Audio Records, the Phoenix-based studio owned and operated by the legendary Floyd Ramsey.
"Well, Phoenix has a great musical history," says Fervor Records founder Dave Hilker about the swinging sounds utilized by the producers of Mad Men, Pan Am, and The Playboy Club.
Hilker says that licensing is the best way to get money into songwriters' (or whoever owns the song) hands, and Fervor has licensed tunes to Jersey Shore, Parks and Recreation, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, and more.
The tunes soundtracking the sixties-era shows are mostly culled from the Amazing Hits From the Transistor Era and Vintage Masters series.
But it's not just about cashing checks. "We want to preserve legacies," Hilker says, nothing that he's been playing in Phoenix bands since 1979.
"Television is the best way to introduce [these songs] to new audiences. Millions of people hear these songs," Hilker says.
Fervor has plenty more stuff saved up for release, including unheard of songs ranging from soul, mariachi, New Wave, and rock from the '60s, and '70s.
Featured on Mad Men:
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Featured on The Playboy Club: Sha Boom Bang by Brother Zee & the Decades from FERVOR RECORDS VINTAGE MASTERS 1957 - 1967
You can pick up the songs from Fervor Records via iTunes.