Why You Should Be Excited For ‘Vinyl’

Brandon Marcus

HBO has a new show coming out this weekend and it’s going to rock.

The network is launching Vinyl on Sunday night. The series follows Richie Finestra (Bobby Cannavale), a record executive trying to find the next great band in the exciting, turbulent, transformative 1970s. The promos promise all the nitty gritty details you would expect when exploring 70s rock. Prepare for some sweaty, loud bliss.

The bottom line is that when HBO premieres a new show, people need to watch. And with good reason. There are plenty of reasons to add Vinyl to your DVR. Here are just a few.

Martin Scorsese

Martin Scorsese is the executive producer and driving force behind Vinyl. What more do I need to say? It’s Martin Scorsese. The Martin Scorsese. This article can end here, right? Scorsese is all you need to immediately be drawn to something, whether he be directing or producing or even just casually bringing it up in conversation. If Scorsese is involved, you should be too.

This is a project that screams Scorsese. The man and his collaborators know how to form story around amazing musical cues (Goodfellas, anyone?) so imagine what they can do when the plot itself is about music and its power. We are in for some propulsive, electric television.


Despite Scorsese’s name, the project has taken a long time to get here. Scorsese has said that Vinyl has been a work-in-progress for decades now. Mick Jagger, also a producer, came to him with the idea long, long ago. The pair planned to make Vinyl as a film but things didn’t pan out. Many years later, the project was given to Terence Winter. Winter, the writer behind many great Sopranos episodes, Boardwalk Empire and The Wolf of Wall Street, turned it into a series. The transformation from movie to TV show makes us happy because it means instead of just two to three hours in the world of Vinyl, we can get season after season.

The Decade(s) Of Music

As noted, Vinyl becoming a show instead of a movie is a true blessing. While the series starts with the music of the 1970’s, subsequent seasons can give us so much more. Punk rock, glam rock and disco can lead to new-wave and hip-hop and pop and metal and grunge and the list goes on, on, on. It would require some clever choices from the writers and maybe a lot of skipping down the timeline but Vinyl could theoretically show us decades of music. It could be a history lesson for viewers, showcasing different genres, stars and struggles. If you’re not excited for multiple seasons of a Scorsese-influenced wander down musical memory lane then your head should be examined.

Vinyl (3)

The Freedom Of HBO

The music scene hasn’t always been very family friendly. Therefore, a show about the industry would have to lose its teeth if it were airing on a regular network. But HBO always reminds its viewers that it isn’t TV. The freedom that HBO grants Vinyl allows a great, no-holds-barred look at the history of modern American music, warts and all. Sex? Check. Drugs? Double check. Rock n’ roll? Of course. This is a vision that won’t be edited to death by standards and practices. Wherever Winter and his team want to go, HBO will allow it. Things can get as dark and raunchy as they want. It might not make for the most uplifting show but it’ll make for one with bite. That’s important when you’re exploring the rock scene of the 70s.


The Cast

Bobby Cannavale is a terrific actor and often the MVP of the work he appears in. His performance on Boardwalk Empire is a revelation. Now after years of playing supporting parts (The Station Agent, Ant-Man, Chef), Cannavale is front and center on Vinyl. He’s the guy and we couldn’t be more excited to see what he does with a starring role.

But it’s not just Cannavale who has us all-in on Vinyl. Olivia Wilde, Ray Romano, Juno Temple and brilliant character actor Paul Ben-Victor round out the main cast. HBO isn’t messing around with the casting here (when do they ever?). As the show goes on, you can bet the series will add some impressive stars as fictional – and possibly real – rock legends. We don’t know how much reality will be injected into the show so while we might not ever see someone portray The Ramones or David Bowie or other stars of the era, we might see actors portray someone like them. This period had larger than life characters, it’ll be exciting to see who Winter snags to play them.

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The Music

Of course this is the major reason you need to watch Vinyl. The show is all about music and the power of HBO and Scorsese have contributed to one hell of a soundtrack. This show will be jam-packed with jams and we will be able to hear them all again and again courtesy of HBO’s ingenious musical department. Each Friday HBO will release a digital soundtrack featuring music from and inspired by the latest installment of the show. So if you’re a fan of the music in the episode, you can quickly buy the soundtrack and listen again and again.

This is a brilliant move for a show revolving around music. It’s also an important history lesson for people wanting more of the era. While most people know the major names from the 1970s, there are many other performers who have faded from memory over the years. Scorsese, Jagger and Winter are the type of guys who take pride in bringing the limelight to those who deserve it. Expect to find some new favorite songs via Vinyl. 

In closing, Vinyl is a new show on HBO. That alone should get you excited. It’s a new show on HBO about the music scene of the 1970s. That should get you even more excited. It’s a new show on HBO about the music scene of the 1970s starring Bobby Cannavale. Your excitement should be nearly unbearable now. It’s a new show on HBO about the music scene of the 1970s starring Bobby Cannavale and produced by Martin Scorsese, Mick Jagger and Terence Winter.

You’re sold, right?

Vinyl premieres this Sunday on HBO.

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Brandon Marcus
A pop culture lover from birth, Brandon has previously written for VeryAware.com, NerdBastards.com, Trouble.city and CHUD.com. He has complained extensively about inconsequential things on all those sites. Brandon resides in the Pacific Northwest but his heart belongs to Gotham City.
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