PLAYLIST: Your Unofficial “Inherent Vice” Soundtrack

A collection of the best tunes from Pynchon’s 2009 novel that didn’t make it to the film.

For Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest flick, an adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s Inherent Vice, frequent PTA collaborator (and Radiohead member) Jonny Greenwood was called upon to craft a score to accompany the film, which follows the misadventures of private eye Doc Sportello in early ’70s Los Angeles. That score, along with some choice cuts from Neil Young, Can, and Sam Cooke, is compiled in the official soundtrack to the film, available on December 15 via Nonesuch records.

No slouch of a soundtrack to be sure, but within the sprawling world of Pynchon’s source text, music is such a central character that one needn’t have waited specifically for this release in order to have an Inherent Vice soundtrack of their own. Dozens of bands and songs are specifically referenced within the pages of the book, be they famous or obscure, real or fake (that is, unless you happen to know of any recordings by The Boards, Meatball Flag, or Beer).

Here, FLOOD has taken the liberty of compiling a sampler of those tunes to go along for the ride in preparation (and in celebration) of the film’s release today. Or, in the words of Pynchon: “Like a record on a turntable, all it takes is one groove’s difference and the universe can be on into a whole ‘nother song.” Far out, man.


 FLOOD’s Unofficial Inherent Vice Soundtrack

“Happy Trails” by Roy Rogers
“Elusive Butterfly” by Bob Lind
“Tears on My Pillow” by Little Anthony & The Imperials
“One Fine Day” by The Chiffons
“Super Market” by Fapardokly
“Something Happened to Me Yesterday” by The Rolling Stones
“Something in the Air” by Thunderclap Newman
“Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” by The Bonzo Dog Band
“This Guy’s in Love with You” by Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
“Desafinado” by Stan Getz & Astrud Gilberto
“Samba Do Avião” by Antonio Carlos Jobim
“Runaround Sue” by Dion
“The Great Pretender” by The Platters
“Fly Me to the Moon” by Frank Sinatra
“Little GTO” by Ronny and the Daytonas
“Bamboo” by Johnny & The Hurricanes
“Interstellar Overdrive” by Pink Floyd
“Sugar, Sugar” by The Archies
“Yummy Yummy Yummy” by Ohio Express
“God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys

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