A music supervisor’s job is key to any TV show, and this year the Emmys decided to add outstanding music supervision as a form of recognition. And in its first year of existence, the winning trophy will go to one of two networks and a streaming service: HBO, AMC or Netflix.
Read on for the nominees, their submitted episodes and select tracks from the episode up for an award.
Show: Better Call Saul (AMC)
Music supervisor: Thomas Golubic
Episode: “Sunk Costs,” in which Todd Terje’s “Alfonso Muskedunder” is used during Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn)’s montage.
Show: Big Little Lies (HBO)
Music supervisor: Susan Jacobs
Episode: “You Get What You Need,” the finale, in which Crosby Stills and Nash’s “Helpless” plays after a particularly brutal opening scene, and Agnes Obel’s chilling piano track “September Song” closes out the last few scenes of the episode.
Show: Girls (HBO)
Music supervisors: Manish Raval, Jonathan Leahy, Tom Wolfe
Episode: “Goodbye Tour,” the penultimate episode, which plays Bert Jansch’s poignant track “Running From Home” while Hannah Horvath (Lena Dunham) walks around town.
Show: Master of None (Netflix)
Music supervisors: Zach Cowie, Kerri Drootin
Episode: “Amarsi Un Po,” which star and creator Aziz Ansari said is named after “the most sonically important song of the season, from Italian pop star Lucio Battisti, who’d never been licensed outside of Italy. The title means ‘to love each other a little bit.’”
Show: Stranger Things (Netflix)
Music supervisor: Nora Felder
Episode: “Chapter Two: The Weirdo on Maple Street,” where Eleven’s story is slowly revealed and 11 songs, including the Clash’s (prophetic) “Should I Stay or Should I Go” and Trooper’s “Raise a Little Hell,” are on the tracklist.