Fans of VH1’s hit reality shows may be surprised they are ahead of the curve when it comes to new music. Mob Wives: New Blood and Couples Therapy both have featured the British import, John Newman, who just recently debuted his first album, Tribute, in the U.S. In addition to being featured on VH1 shows, Newman’s songs have been picked up by the likes of Oxfam International and the Paralympics.
“It’s quite bizarre,” Newman says of hearing his songs on TV. “They’ll often cut the vocal out and you realize it’s your own song. [But] It’s all right. It’s cool.”
Newman also understands the impact a song can have when featured in a series or commercial: “It’s crazy how songs become so universal when you meant it for a spot-on subject.”
He’s not the only one to appreciate his universal sound. Music supervisor Isaac Ayers says the singer’s soulful vibe is what inspired him to feature Newman on VH1. Records like “All I Need Is You” and “Cheating” have tons of energy and big choruses, which fit sonically with Mob Wives’ retro-inspired soundtrack.
“We used “Cheating” in the third episode because the song, along with most of the songs on Newman’s debut, have the soul sensibility,” Ayers explains. “In the scene, as we transition from Renee’s date to Alicia’s house the lyrics “if you’re cheating, cheat on, but I would never cheat on you” serve to complement Alicia’s storyline as the wiretaps reveal her husband has been unfaithful to her.”
Meanwhile, the themes of “Love Me Again” sync seamlessly with that of Couples Therapy. It’s the reason why the team selected it for the show’s promos.
“Overall John’s music seems fitting for a few of our story lines about heartbreak and rebirth,” Ayers says. ” The soul he’s channeling keeps the show’s soundtrack alive for season 4.”
Fans of “Love Me Again” may be surprised to learn that the video was inspired by Baz Luhrmann. Newman tells VH1 why Romeo + Juliet worked so well for the song.