After 100 episodes across 6 seasons, Teen Wolf aired it’s series finale last night. The show was MTV’s first foray into scripted drama and the show immediately struck a chord with viewers.
For MTV’s music-savvy audience, the soundtrack was a key element of the show’s success. Teen Wolf was a powerhouse of new music discovery, giving many artists their first mainstream exposure and quickly becoming one of the most popular shows on Tunefind.
Music supervisor Laura Webb was the woman behind the almost 600 songs featured in the series, and has been a longtime friend of Tunefind. We spoke with her recently and she shared her favorite music moments from the show. Today – as we say goodbye to Teen Wolf – it seems fitting that we look back at the very beginning of the show.
Hi Laura! Thanks for chatting with us some more as we look back at the music of Teen Wolf. This time let’s start way back at the beginning: how did you first get into music supervision?
I never knew that music supervision existed growing up. I knew that I wanted to work in film and thought I’d figure what job spoke to me the more I learned about the film industry. I ended up moving to Los Angeles and went to USC, and while there I did a lot of internships and learned about different sectors of the movie business.
My first job out of college was actually an agent trainee at a talent agency, but the more I met people and soaked up experience I kept gravitating to music in films. I realized the pattern and figured out a way to break into music supervision. I got a job with two established music supervisors named Laura Wasserman and Darren Higman as their music coordinator. I learned so much from them and realized this was the job I always wanted but didn’t know it existed. I’ve been a freelance music supervisor working in film and TV for ten years now!
I know you worked on some MTV shows previously, like The Hills and The City, among others. How did you get the gig working on Teen Wolf?
That’s right. I had been working on a few other shows for MTV at the time, so when Teen Wolf was announced, I let the music department know I was very interested in working on it. I worked on the pilot, but I still wasn’t sure if I would get the show if it got picked up. Once the show was picked up, I thankfully was asked to work on the series.
What was the original creative brief around the music for the show? What were some of the themes or ideas you and the showrunners decided to explore?
I’m trying to remember back that far now… Ha! I know Jeff Davis always mentioned that he saw Teen Wolf as Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Lost Boys, so I took that and went with it when it came to music. We have these 15- or 16-year-old kids in high school so I tried to picture what I would like if I were that age right now.
Jeff Davis and the other producers are also really great about letting you express your own opinions and ideas about music throughout the run of the series. So even from the beginning they really let both myself and the editor of the pilot, Alyssa Clark, have fun with the music and see what we came up with as we toiled with countless options for many of the spots! Thankfully they liked what we had to show them.
Were there particular artists or songs that proved crucial in defining the sound of the show in those early days?
Deadmau5’ “Ghosts N Stuff” was picked by Jeff Davis and he told me really loved this song and the vibe of it. I got really excited because I’ve always been a huge fan of electronic music. At the time no one was using electronica in their shows. I had definitely tried in my past projects but people were hesitant to use electronic music for some reason. So, when Jeff said he liked electronica music too it was like he was speaking my love language.
I was so happy we got to feature so many great electronic acts through the series. I had so much fun picking songs for our fight scenes and lacrosse scenes that had an electronic element. For a teenager that grew up in Europe going clubbing it felt very full circle. Who knew all those years of clubbing in London prove to be research for this show!
As the final episode of the series has aired, we thought it would be fun to go back to the very first episode. Can you take us through some of the key moments from episode 1 that helped set the tone for the show?
This became the first song of Teen Wolf. It’s our introductory shots of Scott McCall – a pre-werewolf Scott McCall. I know we tried a bunch of songs here but this song just felt like something Scott would be listening to and doing pull ups to. And the first of many shirtless scenes to come, too! Ha!
This was a song that the original editor of the pilot picked. We all were hesitant to use it as it was a song that had been out there and was recognizable, but it really had the right feel for our lacrosse moment. We always liked using fun and playful songs in whatever genre for the lacrosse moments.
I mentioned this one in the previous interview about my all time favorite moments but I’m happy to talk about it again as James Vincent McMorrow’s sound really soundtracked Scott and Allison’s romance. His music was there when they started the romance and there when she died in his arms. I love that we used this artist to bookend their romance. We actually had another song in the pilot but that artist denied us so we found James and I love it even more than the temp. Now I can’t ever imagine us not using James’ music.
This song was just so fun and playful and was just the tone we set for our lacrosse moments. I love the confidence this song evokes! It was so great to have them come be on camera for our school dance later in this season, too.
This was our fun bit of meta for the show. Our Executive Producer, Russell Mulcahy, is a legendary music video director. Think of an 1980’s music video and chances are it’s one of Russell’s. Fun fact: he actually directed the first ever music video to premier on MTV (Buggles – Video Killed the Radio Star). So this song was our wink to him and that! Plus it’s just a fun tune!
This was the song that started our love affair with using electronica music in the show as mentioned before. I’m so happy we got use Deadmau5 in Teen Wolf. His sound really set a great template for the years going forward.
Thanks for that trip back in time to the first episode. After spending the last 7 years with this team and in Beacon Hills, how are you feeling as the show comes to an end?
I’ve been getting all nostalgic looking back, especially as we were deciding what went on our Teen Wolf soundtrack and what songs to highlight here on Tunefind for the previous post. As this final episode airs, all I can think of is how I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to be a part of this show. It’s been such a rewarding show creatively and personally. It’s been an absolute pleasure. It was such a joy to highlight artists I loved and have fans really embrace these artists and this show. So thank you to you all – I loved it.
While Teen Wolf has come to an end, I know fans will still be looking for new music from you. Do you have other projects coming up?
Yes! I’m currently working on a Gold Circle Films called Break My Heart 1000 Times, directed by Scott Speer. Then I’m working a new Freeform series premiering in January called Siren. I’ve traded werewolves for mermaids on this show. Both projects have a supernatural element, so currently staying in that world.
And maybe the Teen Wolf podcast and spinoff series we’re hearing lots of chatter about today?
I want to work with Jeff Davis forever and ever. I don’t believe either of these two projects are happening anytime soon. Or I should say, it will be awhile before music is needed for these two things if they are happening. We do hope that War of the Worlds goes soon at MTV.
We’re looking forward to that one, too! Thanks again for chatting today, and for all of your support for the artists and the fans.
〉Check out the full list of songs featured in Teen Wolf on Tunefind