The Music in the Novels

Michael Connelly often gets asked about the music that he mentions in his books. So here is the complete list of artists, songs, and records/CDs mentioned in Michael’s novels. Enjoy! Listen to some of the music via Spotify.

Complete List:

The 1975

Abbey Lincoln

“Amazing Grace”

Art Pepper:
“High Jingo”
“Straight Life” (Art Pepper Meets The Rhythm Section)
“The Shadow of Your Smile”
“You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To”
“Patricia,” “Straight Life,” and “Over The Rainbow,” (Unreleased Art)

Beach Boys:
“Help Me, Rhonda”

The Beatles

Ben Webster

Biggie Smalls

Bill Evans and the Bill Evans Trio

Billy Strayhorn:
“Blood Count”
“Lush Life”
“Rain Check”

Bishop Briggs:
“Dark Side”

Black Pumas

Bob Dylan:
“All Along the Watchtower”

Bob Seger:
“Night Moves”

Boz Scaggs:
“For All We Know”

Branford Marsalis

Bruce Springsteen:
“Darkness on the Edge of Town”

Cab Calloway:
“Everybody That Comes To My Place Has To Eat”

Charlie Mingus:
“C Jam Blues”

Charlie Parker

Chet Baker:
“Cool Burnin'”
“My Funny Valentine”
“Night Bird”

Christian Scott:
“Litany Against Fear”

The Clash:
“I Fought The Law”

Clifford Brown:
“Willow Weep For Me,” (Clifford Brown With Strings)

Cody Jinks

Cole Porter

Connie Stevens:
“Both Sides Now”
“Promises, Promises”


Danny Grissett:
“Let’s Face the Music and Dance,” (Form)

Death Cab For Cutie:
“Black Sun”

DelFeayo Marsalis

Dizzy Gillespie:
“The Champ”

The Doors:
“The Changeling,”
“Riders On The Storm,”
“The End”

Dr. Dre

Duke Ellington:
“Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me”

Ed Reed:
“Here’s to Life”

Eddie Harris and Les McCann:
“Compared To What”

Eddie Money:
“Two Tickets to Paradise”

Elvis Presley:
“Blue Christmas”

Eric Clapton:
“Somewhere Over The Rainbow”
“Judgement Day” (Clapton)

Frank Morgan:
“All Blues”
“Lullaby” (Mood Indigo)

Frank Sinatra:
“Summer Wind”
“That’s Life”

Gary Smulyan:
Hidden Treasures

George Cables:
“Helen’s Song”

Gioacchino Rossini:
“William Tell Overture”

Grace Kelly:
“Somewhere Over The Rainbow”
“By the Grave”

Guns N’ Roses:
“Sweet Child O’ Mine”

Hank Williams, Jr

Horace Tapscott

Houston Person:
Chemistry with Ron Carter

Howlin’ Wolf:
“I Ain’t Superstitious”
“Wang Dang Doodle”

Jack Sheldon

Jim Morrison

Jimi Hendrix:
“Purple Haze”

John Coltrane:
“Song of the Underground Railroad”
“Soul Eyes”

John Fogerty:
“Bad Moon Rising”

John Handy

John Handy Quintet:

John Legend and The Roots:
“Compared To What”

Judy Collins

Kamasi Washington:
“Change of the Guard”

King Curtis:
“A Whiter Shade of Pale”

Lee Konitz

Louis Armstrong:
“What a Wonderful World”

Louis Jordan:
“Knock Me A Kiss”

Lucinda Williams:
Car Wheels on a Gravel Road
World Without Tears


Mark “Preacher” Gross

Marvin Gaye:
“Sexual Healing”
“What’s Going On”

Maurice Ravel:

Michael Formanek:
The Rub and Spare Change

Miles Davis:
“All Blues” (Kind of Blue)
“Freddie Freeloader” (Kind of Blue)

Milt Jackson

Moody Blues

“Dig Down”

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov:

Paul Chambers

Pearl Jam

Percy Sledge:
“When a Man Loves a Woman”

Pharez Whitted Quintet:
“Tree of Life”

Philly Joe Jones

Procol Harum

Red Garland

Rod Stewart:
“Twisting The Night Away”

Rolling Stones:
“Midnight Rambler”

Ron Carter:
“Seven Steps to Heaven,” (Dear Miles)
“Stella By Starlight,” (Dear Miles)
“Bags’ Groove”
Chemistry with Houston Person
“A Song For You,” (At His Best)

Roseanne Cash

Ry Cooder:
“It’s Just Work For Me,” (Chávez Ravine)
“Teardrops Will Fall”
“Poor Man’s Shangri-La”

Samuel Barber:
“Adagio for Strings”

Seamus Blake

Shelly Berg Trio:

Shirley Horn

Snoop Dog

Sonny and Cher:
“I’ve Got You Babe”

Sonny Rollins:
Falling In Love With Jazz

Thelonious Monk:
“Evidence,” (Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane – At Carnegie Hall)

Three Six Mafia

Tom Harrell

Tom Waits:
Blue Valentine

Tomasz Stanko:
“Soul of Things”

Tupac Shakur:
“God Bless The Dead”
“Life Goes On”
“So Many Tears”
“To Live & Die in L.A.”

Van Morrison:
“Wild Night”

Warren Zevon:
“Lawyers, Guns and Money”

Wayne Shorter:
“502 Blues”

Wynton Marsalis:
“The Majesty of the Blues”

Complete List By Book

From The Black Echo
Branford Marsalis
Frank Morgan
John Coltrane, “Soul Eyes”
Sonny Rollins, Falling In Love With Jazz
Wayne Shorter, “502 Blues”
Jimi Hendrix, “Purple Haze”

From The Black Ice
Frank Morgan, “Lullaby,” (Mood Indigo)
John Coltrane, “Song of the Underground Railroad”
John Coltrane, “Spiritual”
Percy Sledge, “When a Man Loves a Woman”

From The Concrete Blonde
Cab Calloway, “Everybody That Comes To My Place Has To Eat”
Frank Sinatra, “Summer Wind”
Billy Strayhorn, “Lush Life”
Billy Strayhorn, “Blood Count”
Billy Strayhorn, “Rain Check”

From The Last Coyote
Clifford Brown, “Willow Weep For Me,” (Clifford Brown With Strings)
Duke Ellington, “Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me”
Louis Armstrong, “What a Wonderful World”
Abbey Lincoln
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, “Scheherazade”
Marvin Gaye, “Sexual Healing”
Tom Waits, Blue Valentine

From Trunk Music
Beach Boys, “Help Me, Rhonda”
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, “Scheherazade”
Eddie Money, “Two Tickets to Paradise”
Warren Zevon, “Lawyers, Guns and Money”

From Blood Work
Howlin’ Wolf, “I Ain’t Superstitious”
Howlin’ Wolf, “Wang Dang Doodle”
Louis Jordan, “Knock Me A Kiss”
Rolling Stones, “Midnight Rambler”
Jimi Hendrix, “Fire”
Bob Dylan, “All Along the Watchtower”

From Angels Flight
Samuel Barber, “Adagio for Strings”
Frank Morgan, “Lullaby”

From Void Moon
Lucinda Williams, Car Wheels on a Gravel Road
Roseanne Cash
Frank Sinatra, “Summer Wind”
Frank Sinatra, “That’s Life”

From A Darkness More Than Night
Art Pepper, “Straight Life,” (Art Pepper Meets The Rhythm Section)
Red Garland
Paul Chambers
Philly Joe Jones
Miles Davis
Bob Seger, “Night Moves”
Rod Stewart, “Twisting The Night Away”
Bruce Springsteen, “Darkness on the Edge of Town”
Van Morrison, “Wild Night”
John Fogerty, “Bad Moon Rising”

From City Of Bones
Bill Evans
Miles Davis, Kind of Blue
John Coltrane
Clifford Brown
Bill Evans Trio

From Chasing The Dime
Guns N’ Roses

From Lost Light
Art Pepper, “You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To”
Jack Sheldon
Cole Porter
Lee Konitz
Art Pepper, “High Jingo”
Art Pepper, “The Shadow of Your Smile”
Frank Morgan, “Lullaby,” Mood Indigo
George Cables
John Coltrane, “Soul Eyes”
Chet Baker, “Cool Burnin'”
Chet Baker, “My Funny Valentine”
Louis Armstrong, “What a Wonderful World”
Billy Strayhorn, “Lush Life”

From The Narrows
Lucinda Williams, World Without Tears
Frank Morgan, “Lullaby”

From The Closers
Boz Scaggs, “For All We Know”
Miles Davis, “Freddie Freeloader,” (Kind of Blue)

From The Lincoln Lawyer
Three Six Mafia
Tupac Shakur, “God Bless The Dead”
Tupac Shakur, “Life Goes On”
Tupac Shakur, “To Live & Die in L.A.”
Tupac Shakur, “So Many Tears”
Dr. Dre
Biggie Smalls
Snoop Dog
Pearl Jam

From Echo Park
Ry Cooder, “It’s Just Work For Me,” (Chávez Ravine)
Thelonius Monk, “Evidence,” (Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane – At Carnegie Hall)
Miles Davis, “All Blues,” Kind of Blue
The Clash, “I Fought The Law”

From The Overlook
George Cables
Frank Morgan, “All Blues”
Ron Carter
Louis Armstrong, “What a Wonderful World”
Art Pepper
Chet Baker

From The Brass Verdict
Gioacchino Rossini, “William Tell Overture”
Frank Morgan
Art Pepper
Charlie Parker
Eric Clapton
Ron Carter

From The Scarecrow
Jim Morrison
The Doors, “The Changeling”
Death Cab For Cutie
The Doors, “Riders On The Storm”
The Doors, “The End”
Eric Clapton, “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”

From Nine Dragons
Ron Carter, “Seven Steps to Heaven,” (Dear Miles)
Tomasz Stanko, “Soul of Things”
Art Pepper

From The Reversal
Death Cab for Cutie

From The Fifth Witness
Ry Cooder, “Teardrops Will Fall”
Ry Cooder, “Poor Man’s Shangri-La”
Maurice Ravel, “Boléro”
Sonny and Cher, “I’ve Got You Babe”
Eric Clapton,Judgement Day,” Clapton

From The Drop
Frank Morgan
Art Pepper
Chet Baker, “Night Bird”

From The Black Box
“Mood Indigo”
Frank Morgan
George Cables, “Helen’s Song”
Art Pepper, “Patricia,”  “Straight Life,” & “Over The Rainbow,” (Unreleased Art)
Ron Carter
Thelonious Monk
Danny Grissett, “Let’s Face the Music and Dance,” (Form)
Tom Harrell
Seamus Blake
Grace Kelly
Gary Smulyan, Hidden Treasures
Michael Formanek, The Rub and Spare Change

From The Burning Room
Grace Kelly, “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”
Frank Morgan
Hank Williams, Jr
Dizzy Gillespie, “The Champ”
DelFeayo Marsalis
Mark “Preacher” Gross
Ron Carter, “Seven Steps To Heaven,” & “Stella by Starlight,” (Dear Miles)
The 1975
Miles Davis

From The Crossing
John Handy Quintet,  “Naima”
Ron Carter,  “Bags’ Groove”
Milt Jackson
Death Cab for Cutie, “Black Sun”
Kamasi Washington
Wynton Marsalis, “The Majesty of the Blues”

From The Wrong Side of Goodbye
Christian Scott, “Litany Against Fear” and “Naima”
John Handy
Grace Kelly
Jim Hendrix
Rolling Stones
Moody Blues
Connie Stevens, “Both Sides Now”
Judy Collins
Death Cab For Cutie, “Black Sun”

From Two Kinds Of Truth
Horace Tapscott
Houston Person & Ron Carter, Chemistry
Frank Morgan, “Lullaby,” (Mood Indigo)
Kamasi Washington, “Change Of The Guard”

From The Night Fire
“Amazing Grace”
Ben Webster
Charlie Mingus, “C Jam Blues,” and “Perdido”
John Handy
Ron Carter
Muse, “Dig Down”
Black Pumas
Death Cab For Cutie
Bishop Briggs,”Dark Side”
Guns N’ Roses

From Fair Warning
Grace Kelly, “By the Grave”

From The Law Of Innocence
Cody Jinks

From The Dark Hours
Eddie Harris and Les McCann, “Compared To What”
John Legend and The Roots, “Compared To What”
Marvin Gaye, “What’s Going On”

From Desert Star
Clifford Brown, Clifford Brown with Strings
Shelly Berg Trio, “Blackbird”
The Beatles
King Curtis, “A Whiter Shade of Pale”
Procol Harum
Pharez Whitted Quintet, “Tree of Life”
Miles Davis
Ed Reed, “Here’s to Life”
Shirley Horn
Ron Carter, “A Song For You,” (At His Best)

From The Short Stories
Christmas Even
Art Pepper
Wayne Shorter
Elvis Presley, “Blue Christmas”
“I’ll Be Home For Christmas”
Connie Stevens, “Promises, Promises”
“Tennessee Waltz”
“Auld Lang Syne”

The Perfect Triangle
“Sweet Child O’ Mine”

Frank Morgan, “Lullaby”