Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner paid $250,000 in licensing fees to use the BeatlesTomorrow Never Knows in the eighth episode of the fifth season of Mad Men, Lady Lazarus.

Don Draper is told by his young wife Megan to play her copy of Revolver (1966), and is instructed to put on that song. The stodgy, conservative Draper is not impressed by the song and turns it off, underscoring a recurring theme through the season that the character is entirely out of touch with youth culture.

It has become notoriously difficult to license the band’s music for television, but Weiner felt the high cost was worthwhile because it was thematically and chronologically consistent with the setting of the show, which takes place in the mid-Sixties. “The thing about that song in particular was, the Beatles are, throughout their intense existence, constantly pushing the envelope, and I really wanted to show how far ahead of the culture they were. That song to me is revolutionary, as is that album, ” Weiner told the New York Times.

Aside from songs that have been played in the occasional commercial or The Beatles cartoon series that was shown on ABC in the 1960s, the use of Tomorrow Never Knows on Mad Men was probably one of the only times that a Beatles track has been used in a TV show, music and advertising executives say.

This is only one example about the importance of music in TV shows. Here you have a selection of TV series with vinyl records and turntables as another one in the cast.

– Sharp Objects (2018- )

Creator: Marti Noxon.
Stars: Amy Adams, Patricia Clarkson, Chris Messina…

– The Flintstones (1960–1966)

The Flintstones TV Series

Creators: Joseph Barbera, William Hanna.
Stars: Alan Reed, Mel Blanc, Jean Vander Pyl…

– The Addams Family (1964–1966)

The Addams Family

Creator: David Levy.
Stars: John Astin, Carolyn Jones, Jackie Coogan…

– Columbo (1971–2003)

Columbo (1971–2003)

Creators: Richard Levinson, William Link.
Stars: Peter Falk, Mike Lally, John Finnegan…

– M.A.S.H. (1972-1983)

M.A.S.H. (1972)

Creator: Larry Gelbart.
Stars: Alan Alda, Wayne Rogers, Loretta Swit…

– Twin Peaks (1990-1991)

Twin Peaks (1990-1991)

Creators: Mark Frost, David Lynch.
Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Michael Ontkean, Mädchen Amick…

– Low & Oder / Special Victims Unit (1999 – )

Low & Oder / Special Victims Unit (TV Series 1999 – )

Creator: Dick Wolf.
Stars: Mariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni, Ice-T…

– That ’70s Show (1998-2006)

That '70s Show (1998-2006)

Creators: Mark Brazill, Bonnie Turner, Terry Turner.
Stars: Topher Grace, Laura Prepon, Mila Kunis…

– House (2004-2012)

House (2004-2012)

Creator: David Shore.
Stars: Hugh Laurie, Omar Epps, Robert Sean Leonard…

– Fringe (2008–2013)

Fringe (2008–2013)

Creators: J.J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci.
Stars: Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, John Noble…

– Suits (TV Series 2011– )

Suits (TV Series 2011– )

Creator: Aaron Korsh.
Stars: Gabriel Macht, Patrick J. Adams, Meghan Markle…

– Transparent (2014-)


Creator: Jill Soloway.
Stars: Jeffrey Tambor, Amy Landecker, Gaby Hoffmann…

– Bosch (2014-)

Bosch (2014-)

Creators: Michael Connelly, Eric Ellis Overmyer.
Stars: Titus Welliver, Jamie Hector, Amy Aquino…

– Empire (2015– )


Creators: Lee Daniels, Danny Strong.
Stars: Terrence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, Jussie Smollett…

– Vinyl (2016)

Vinyl (2016)

Creators: Rich Cohen, Mick Jagger, Martin Scorsese.
Stars: Bobby Cannavale, Paul Ben-Victor, P.J. Byrne…

– Stranger Things (2016-)

Stranger Things (2016-)

Creators: Matt Duffer, Ross Duffer.
Stars: Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Winona Ryder…

– The Get Down (2016-2017)

The Get Down (TV Series 2016– )

Creators: Stephen Adly Guirgis, Baz Luhrmann.
Stars: Justice Smith, Shameik Moore, Herizen F. Guardiola…

– Gossip Girl (TV Series 2007–2012)


Creators: Stephanie Savage, Josh Schwartz.
Stars: Blake Lively, Leighton Meester, Penn Badgley…

– Everything Sucks (2018)

Creators: Ben York Jones, Michael Mohan.
Stars: Jahi Di’Allo Winston, Peyton Kennedy, Patch Darragh…

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