Mick Jagger talks about writing the ‘Slow Horses’ theme song on Apple TV+

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The Apple TV+ thriller “Slow Horses” features Mick Jagger’s first-ever TV theme song, and he says he wrote the lyrics because he already knew and loved the books the show is based on.

“Slow Horses” is a darkly comedic spy thriller based on the novels by Mick Herron and made for Apple TV+ by See-Saw Films. Debuting Friday, April 1, 2022, the series features “Strange Game,” a theme song with lyrics by Jagger and music by Daniel Pemberton.

“It’s a pretty popular book series, so I knew what it was about”, the Rolling Stones the singer said Variety. “I knew the atmosphere very well, so as soon as [Daniel Pemberton] sent me the track, I just pulled a few pages of notes from what I thought it was. It came very, very quickly, which is always a good sign.”

Because of coronavirusPemberton and Jagger did not meet in person to collaborate, but had a series of Zoom calls.

“I played the track to him on guitar,” Pemberton said. “I’m not even a good guitarist. It was very weird playing guitar for Mick Jagger on the Zoom line.”

For his part, Jagger then says he wrote the lyrics, “just save them on my iPhone and send them to her.”

“It’s pretty irreverent, but Gary Oldman’s character is irreverent,” Jagger continues. “It’s also kind of weird, so it combines those two things. You don’t want it to be too serious.”

The idea to approach Jagger came from music supervisor Catherine Grieves and director James Hawes. “[‘Slow Horses’] is a resounding British show in a very confident British genre,” Hawes said, “which had to find its own flavor.”

“From the start, I thought we could use a song in the opening to help us set the tone,” he continued, “especially with the first show, which has an action opening very dynamic, perhaps more conventional.”

Hawes and Grieves wanted a song that had “the same gravity and swagger” as lead character Jackson Lamb (Gary Oldman). They say they immediately and only thought of Mick Jagger, but didn’t think they had him.

“I think we both laughed about it,” Hawes says.

The first two episodes of “Slow Horses” will begin streaming on Apple TV+ from April 1, 2022. Four more episodes will then air weekly on Fridays.


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