‘American Woman’ Music Supervisor Ann Kline on Using Both New & Era-Specific Music

American Woman
Paramount Network

After newly separated ’70s housewife Bonnie (Alicia Silverstone) meets hot artist Adam (Sam Morgan) at a party, they have a very close encounter up against a wall as “More, More, More” blares. Finding that Andrea True Connection tune to score the sexy American Woman scene is the work of music supervisor Ann Kline (The Magicians, Shameless), whose job is both creative and, at times, taxing. (“There’s so much paperwork,” she says, “searching for song rights, negotiations….”)

Over the course of the dramedy’s first season, she’s cultivated a surprising sound-track ranging from era-specific (The Guess Who, Roy Orbison) to contemporary (The Peach Kings, Tennis). Kline fills us in.

Tell us about your role as music supervisor.

Ann Kline: With this project, we got drafts of the scripts before they went into production, so we had time to make playlists for all of the characters as inspiration for the writers. After we got the scenes, I worked closely with the picture editors to pick music.

Since the show is based on the childhood of The Real Housewives of Beverly HillsKyle Richards, did she have any input?

She was super involved. In the pilot, when Bonnie’s dancing with her daughters to [Hot Chocolate’s] “You Sexy Thing”, that was a song she and her sisters always danced to as kids.

You also use newer artists. Was there pressure to stay true to the decade?

Usually I feel strongly about sticking to the period: [Music is] one thing you can really make authentic. But this show feels ’70s without having to worry about that. The costumes, the sets, the cars — everything was amazing. It opened the door to using all kinds of music to capture the characters’ personalities.

Can you tease anything we’ll hear in the finale?

Two recent songs that fit the mood of the ’70s: “Tams Up” by Diane Coffee and “Gooey” by Glass Animals.

American Woman, Season Finale, Thursday, Aug. 23, 10/9c, Paramount Network