The Royals S1E1 – Reimagined

The Royals, released on 2015, is a show created by Mark Schwahn as an adaptation of the novel Falling for Hamlet. It tells the story of a fictional contemporary British Royal Family who struggles with public scandals and tragedies in a world where society has no place for monarchies anymore.

Lindsay Wolfington (twitter: @lonewolflindsay) is the incredible music supervisor who envisioned and created a rather unconventional soundtrack with a rebellious and sexy feeling for the show. Over 15 years of experience, plus an amazing ear for music were what made possible for Lindsay to come up with such an energetic and emotional soundtrack. She was nominated by the Guild of Music Supervisors Awards for Best Music Supervision in a TV Drama for this compilation and many of the recordings of the show were also nominated.

The Royals is full of dramatic moments, sexy scenes, and hints of comedy that allow for music to be flexible and fun to play with in different scenarios. The first episode of the show Stand and Unfold Yourself has iconic pieces such as Problem by Natalia Kills and All I Want by Kodaline which have certainly become easily associated with the show and the characters themselves which makes this episode even more challenging to reimagine.

However, for this REIMAGINED soundtrack, we have created an interesting proposal full of current hits and up-and-coming artists of 2019 which gives the show a sense of freshness in today’s world:

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/user/12164397906/playlist/4fqGf3YGyusZ3lygSufZYX?si=lb5hggKCS_O5FWD788qizQ

1. Original song: Gimme Shelter by The Rolling Stones. This is the very first scene of the show and the audience is introduced to the queen and it sets the tone for her character for the rest of the show as she is being extremely bossy and clever. Our choice: Primadonna Like Me by The Struts. This song has a calmed start that allows for the schedule to be shared and it also has a big break soon after which gives the queen the edgy spotlight that characterizes her while going downstairs. It also provides a transition into the pub scene that comes right after.
2. Original song: Problem by Natalia Kills. This scene introduces one of the strongest characters of the show, princess Eleanor. The song picked is a perfect mix between sexy, empowering, rebellious, and a little over the top which describes perfectly the character of the princess. Although we would not change this song, there are a few other songs that, if re-recorded with the right production could fit the character very well: Crown on the Ground by Sleigh Bells, Kiwi by Harry Styles, Raise Hell by Dorothy, Horns by Bryce Fox, Body Talks by The Struts & Kesha, and I Did Something Bad by Taylor Swift.
3. Original song: Always by Panama. This scene is extremely important as it sets the theme of the whole show. Prince Liam and the rest of the royal family find out that the heir to the throne has died. Although once again, we would not change the song since the lyrics match the tone of the scene perfectly, we recommend using The Other Side by Ruelle, however, we would re-record it in order to change the pace of the song and make it more dynamic to allow for Liam’s race to the palace to be supported by the musical environment.
4. Original song: Byegone by Volcano Choir. This scene is one of the most emotional scenes of the whole show since it is the part where the royal family mourns the loss of prince Robert, the firstborn son of the king and queen. Our choice: Waves by Dean Lewis. Although the scene revolves around the funeral for Robert, there is an underlying theme which is prince Liam having to step up as the next in line for the throne. This song is nostalgic as well as encouraging and creates the doubt about the future which is ultimately what the scene is attempting to convey by showing Liam addressing the press on behalf of the family.
5. Original song: Songs About Roses by Owl John. In this scene, the king sneaks out to walk around the streets of London without any security to meditate on the idea of abolishing the monarchy. Our choice: Blood // Water Acoustic by grandson or You’re Somebody Else by flora cash. The first song not only criticizes the old established ways but also adds the burden of “the price being your son and your daughter” which supports the king’s side of the sequence while it allows for a transition into the scene where Ophelia confronts her dad about worrying for him being in the line of duty. The second song is a little slower and more sentimental which allows for the scene to transmit a different message still maintaining the doubts about the monarchy and questioning the trust between Ophelia and her dad.
6. Original song: Rock Bottom by Mickey Avalon. In this scene, Eleanor and her cousins decide to do drugs in the throne room while talking about the monarchy being abolished. Our choice: Bury My Face Down by grandson. This song not is sexy and has the classic rebel feel that characterizes Eleonor but the lyrics also say “I won’t go quietly, I’m bringing my crown” which goes extremely well with the theme of the scene.
7. Original song: Wild Country by Wake Owl. In this scene, Ophelia discovers how her dad stood up to the queen and how much he really cares for his family. Our choice: Better by Declan J Donovan. This song not only has a soft beginning which allows for Eleanor and Ophelia’s conversation to take place but it also has very emotional lyrics that circle back to Ophelia’s mom and how his dad is reacting to her loss.
8. Original song: Just Kids by Furs. In this scene, prince Liam visits Ophelia to ask her out for coffee and things turn a little awkward. Our choice: Teenager by Black Honey. This song allows for the awkwardness of the scene to take place while still keeping the flirtatious and teenage-romance feel.
9. Original song: This City by Kid Karate. In this scene, princess Eleanor talks to Robert which brings out a lot of emotions, however, she moves on to the club as alcohol, drugs, and parties are her coping mechanism. Our choice: Let Me Live / Let Me Die by Des Rocs or Everything Everything Changed by Lead Coloured River. These songs have intros that can be extended enough to create an emotional feeling while Eleanor is remembering her brother, however, their buildups allow for the club scene to hit quickly enough while increasing the energy. Both songs also have lyrics that fit the overall mood of the sequence.
10. Original song: All I Want by Kodaline. This song extends through three different scenes, one where the king and prince Liam are talking about the future of the monarchy, another where bodyguard Jasper is blackmailing princess Eleanor after sleeping together, and one where the king and his brother Cyrus are hunting and wondering what they would be if they weren’t royals. Our choice: Kings by Tribe Society or I Am by James Arthur. Since both Liam and Cyrus show desire to become kings, these songs actually portray a sense of jealousy and apprehension to the idea of abolishing the monarchy, they also fit the toxic relationship developing between Eleanor and Jasper.

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