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Take Note: A Song For “True Blood’s” Sookie Stackhouse

Take Note: A Song For “True Blood’s” Sookie Stackhouse (photo)

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If I were the music supervisor for HBO’s “True Blood,” I’d want to stay away from pop for the most part and amp up the creepy swamp vibe with bayou blues and dirty soul, complimenting the show’s location. Music supervisor Gary Calamar, veteran of “Weeds,” and “Six Feet under,” has done exactly that, often employing musicians from Louisiana like Allen Toussaint and C.C. Adcock to lend the series a kick with authentic regional sound.

The show’s music has teeth. Everyone knows Jace Everett’s “Bad Things” now, the series theme song. Cobra Verde’s cover of The Rolling Stones’ “Play with Fire” was cool too, though I would still prefer the original. Perhaps it was a budget choice.

“HBO gives us a nice budget but it isn’t unlimited,” Calamar said in an interview with True Blood-Online. “We always need to keep an eye on the finances. So far I think we have a nice balance.”

Clearly, Calamar and creator Alan Ball don’t shy away from venturing out from the swamp. The golden throated M. Ward and everyone’s favorite Scientology rockstar, Beck, have both been used. The show even did some psychedelic record digging with the 13th Floor Elevators. “I love to find songs that are under the radar to use in the show and help to bring them above the radar,” Calamar said about digging. “This works both creatively and financially.”

I have a suggestion for Calamar — who is also a KCRW radio DJ, and so I suspect he might even know Unrest’s “Suki” if he heard it (spelling doesn’t matter when you’re only hearing it). It breaks the rules a bit, but as I’ve pointed out they’re already doing that and no other song is so ready made for Sookie and the plight of a sun-shy vampire in love with her.


“Suki” by Unrest

An influential indie pop anthem off of Unrest’s record, “Imperial f.f.r.r.,” written long ago in 1992, the song has absolutely nothing to do with Anna Paquin’s lovable character in “True Blood.” Songwriter Mark Robinson was probably writing about some feisty Japanese coed, but the lyrics are almost too perfect for the TV spot playing in my head when I think of the show — here changed from “Suki” to Sookie:

I want to be with you all the time / Sookie / I want to lay down in sunshine / Sookie Sookie Sookie….. Kicking kicking / Always night and day / I want to be with you all the time / Sookie Sookie Sookie / I want to lay down in sunshine.

Too cute? Perhaps. But sometimes genius is in the obvious. In this case it’s an 18 year old pop song, forgotten but calling out, deep from the bottoms of a dusty record bins in the corners radio stations all over the country.


Final Countdown

The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at


Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.


Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…