Community Post: 22 Of Our Favorite Songs (And Accompanying Scenes) We First Heard On “The O.C.”

1. Imogen Heap: Hide and Seek

Did you seriously expect me to ease you into this with some little known O.C. song? If you weren’t emotionally compromised when Marissa shot Trey then I highly doubt you’ll enjoy the rest of this Buzzfeed. Not only is Hide and Seek an amazing song that the O.C. made famous, this scene may be hands down one of the best uses of music throughout the whole television series.

Tip: Start video at 7:00

2. Alexi Murdoch: Orange Sky

Admittedly, I heard this song before Season 2 of the O.C but I had completely forgotten about it until I rewatched the emotional scene between Ryan and Trey at the jail. Orange Sky is still on my “Sleep” playlist, where it will forever remain.

3. Finley Quaye: Dice

So I know I just said that Hide and Seek was the best use of music in the O.C. but I might of just lied. Dice is definitely up there and i’ll let y’all fight it out in the comments about which song/scene is better. Lets just say that if the slow-motion sequence of Ryan running up the stairs didn’t get you, the “I Love You” “Thank You” exchange most definitely did. And it was all set to perfectly to the Finley Quaye’s Dice.

4. Patrick Park: Something Pretty

Don’t we all want a love like Seth Cohen and Summer Roberts? Patrick Park actually makes 2 appearances on this list (can you guess the other song?) and both of his songs are absolutely amazing. Great vocalist, great guitar player, soulful and heartfelt. Also, in case the Youtube title didn’t spoil this already, Seth and Summer’s first kiss ever was set to Something Pretty. As an FYI, if anyone of you want to recreate this scene over an upscale dinner date, I believe my twitter is linked here somewhere.

5. Patrick Park: Life is a Song

Did you guess right? Did you tweet me your dinner date availability? If you answered “no” to either of these two questions then you can’t really call yourself an O.C. fan can you. Anyways, there may be no more fitting a song to have been chosen to end the final episode of the O.C.

6. Jeff Buckley: Hallelujah

I guess if you went to Jewish/summer camp like me you probably already heard this song played by some over-excited “song leader” with a guitar. But for mainstream America, Jeff Buckley and the O.C. brought Leonard Cohen’s song to our televisions. Talk about an emotionally charged song set to an intense sailing montage…

and the Imogen Heap cover

Don’t die Marissa, we like you way more than we like Taylor.

Tip: Start video at 3:00

7. South: Paint the Silence

Ryan is the master of the sad face/pensive look. Paired that with a great mellow alt-rock song and you have yourself one of the most famous scenes from the O.C. Paint the Silence was always a quality homework song for the late fall/winter months.

The first time the song was used…

Classic first kiss on the ferris wheel scene.

8. Phantom Planet: California

Play this song today and everyone will be like “I miss the OC, thank you for playing an adolescent favorite”. This song goes back all the way to the pilot and has greeted us ever since at the start of every episode. This is also when we meet Sandy Cohen, who is pretty much the best character on the O.C. anyways.

9. Placebo: Running up that Hill

How come every scene with Sandy Cohen ends up being one of the best scenes ever? Also, how kick-ass is this song, pretty amazing isn’t it? I’m going to say that the O.C. made this song famous and that CSI, Vampire Daries, NCIS, Bones and Stargate all just wanted to hop on the Placebo bandwagon.

10. Joseph Arthur: Honey and the Moon

Another great song from the first season of the series. Honey and the Moon just perfectly encapsulates everything we felt while watching this first episode: the Ryan/Marissa dynamic and Sandy Cohen AGAIN being awesome. The first episode really set the bar for what would turn out to be an amazing soundtrack.

11. Ryan Adams: Wonderwall

This song is such a double whammy. First, it’s the perfect song for Seth and Summer. Second, it subtly hints that Marissa gets what she deserves for choosing Oliver over Ryan. Never mess with my bro Ryan, he’s way better than you anyways Marissa.

12. Rooney: I’m Shakin’

I’m Shakin is important for many reasons, one of which is that Rooney ushered in the “guest appearance” trend that eventually led to our favorite party spot: The Bait Shop. Artists like Jem, The Killers, Death Cab, Modest Mouse and T.I. all eventually made on screen appearances. Name a television show with that could pull such musical talent.

13. Rachael Yamagata: Wore Me Down

Rachael Yamagata’s Wore Me Down pretty much makes this scene one of the best and saddest scene’s ever. Seth sucking it up and taking it like a man while his future wife is being wined and dined by a bro with mad Cali flow gets me every time. And when Rachael Yamagata gets all high and raspy…well…no words can explain.


Did you know that this song’s premier was on the O.C? The episode O.Sea debuted on May 12 2005 while the song was later officially released on September 5th (Hide and Seek also premiered before official release during this season’s final episode on May 19 2005). This song is awesome for many reasons, mainly because it’s the perfect backdrop for sad/painfully redeeming things to happen. But i’m still bitter they killed off Cal.

15. Mazzy Star: Into Dust

“She’s a party girl with a bad habit, a bad habit for drugs”. But really, Marissa needs to stop being a NARP and start being responsible. All your substance abuse, sexual indiscretion and emotional breakdowns do is give us awesome songs to add to our Ipods. Into Dust is a straight up depressing song, but a great one at that.

16. Sufjan Stevens: For the Widows in Paradise

Johnny’s death is by far the saddest of O.C deaths. And how do you make the death of a beloved character sadder? You add a Sufjan Stevens soundtrack. For the Widows in Paradise is by far one of the best Sufjan Stevens songs out there: the harmony, the use of banjo before it was popular, the distinct use of horns that makes the Sufjan sound what it is.

17. Syd Matters: To All of You

This song just has a good vibe. And the scene is heartbreaking, which is apparently where the best O.C. songs come from. My only gripe with this otherwise perfect (2) song placement is the lack of open container and underage drinking laws on “the Pier”. Is Marissa really pounding back a bottle of whiskey?

18. Nada Surf: If You Leave

Seth, you slay me. You don’t love her anyways, I promise you. Man up bro, really. But at least this song was so good it made Seth cry while it simultaneously rekindling the Ryan/Seth bromance.

19. Matt Pond PA: Champagne Supernova

Better than the Oasis original? Probably not. But that doesn’t take away from the fact that this song is perfectly used in one of the all time best O.C. kiss scenes. Seth really should never stop getting himself into potentially dangerous yet amazingly cute situations. Also, the poppy remake of this song fits within the whole O.C. vibe perfectly, something the original couldn’t have done.

20. Bell X1: Eve, The Apple of my Eye

The infamous Marissa/Alex kiss. The Sandy Cohen heartbreak. Eve, the Apple of my Eye is a great rainy day song and has a very Damien Rice feel to it. Plus we get to watch the two hottest O.C. characters make out on the beach. It’s the little things in life I guess.

21. Jem: Maybe I’m Amazed

One of the best covers the O.C covers ever, plus Jem absolutely kills it. And it’s one of the famous O.C. live performances. You can’t compare to Paul McCartney but the song should stand on it’s own. Admit it, we all had this song on our Itunes at one point.

22. Youth Group: Forever Young

Slow dancing in the moonlight? A montage of all the television show’s important characters “working it out”? An awesome cover of an Australian pop-hit? It’s a deep song: at it’s core, its an anthem about youth and temporality. And it’s super singable, like shower-time singable.

Re Forever Young: The break-up.

Cue the tears.

Read more:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.