The Black Tulip Playlist

Happy October! To usher in the new month, we have the Black Tulip Playlist:

Accidentally in Love, Counting Crows.

Could any song be more perfect for Miles? I listened to this over and over while I was in the early phases of writing The Masque of the Black Tulip. As I played it, I could just picture Miles bounding down the stairs of Uppington House, lock of hair flopping, scattering ginger biscuit crumbs.

Kiss Me, Sixpence None the Richer.

If Accidentally in Love is Miles’ song, this is Henrietta’s. Otherwise known as: “Hey, buddy, get a clue and just smooch me already.” So Henrietta.

Brandenburg Concerti Nos. 4, 5, & 6, Johann Sebastian Bach.

I listened to a lot of Bach while writing Black Tulip. I still haven’t quite figured out what the connection is, but, somehow, it just seemed to work for this book.

St. Matthew’s Passion, Johann Sebastian Bach.

Bach, Bach, Bach.

Caro Mio Ben, Giuseppe Giordani.

The song Hen sings to Miles in the emotionally fraught musicale scene. Like Henrietta, my little sister is a classically trained singer, and she patiently coached me through this song, years ago, so I would have something to sing at auditions for amateur theatrical societies and at family parties for elderly relatives. When I needed something for Henrietta to sing, Caro Mio Ben came instantly to mind. The lyrics couldn’t have been more perfect: “Thou all my bliss/ Believe but this/ When thou art far/ My heart is lorn”.

This Kiss, Faith Hill.

Sense a theme here? No, I don’t mean Bach. I suppose it makes sense that songs with “kiss” in the title were the order of the day for Black Tulip, since the pivotal point of the books comes when Miles kisses Hen and realizes, ooops, life won’t ever be the same. Unstoppable, indeed! And if anyone’s a “white knight/ With a good heart, soft touch, fast horse” it’s Miles.

Do you have any good Henrietta and Miles songs to add to the list? When I post the lists to the Diversions page in January, I’ll be adding a “Readers Recommend” section to each list. So please recommend away!


  1. alexandria on October 1, 2009 at 9:41 am

    what about All I ask of you, from phantom of the opera? It could be like a Miles and Henrietta duet lol

  2. Jacqueline on October 1, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    Secret Garden by Bruce Springsteen. Even though the words may not fit, it’s all about location, location, location.

  3. Debra Callaway on October 1, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    He Touched Me by Barbra Streisand,
    With lyrics that say “He touched me and suddenly nothing, nothing is the same”
    It’s a natural.

  4. Rebecca on October 1, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    Hmm, what about “When You Say You Love Me” by Josh Groban?

  5. Kit on October 1, 2009 at 7:01 pm

    You Raise me Up by Josh Groban? not the typical application of this song, but Hen and Miles are both so dependent on eachother after all these years.

  6. Meg on October 2, 2009 at 12:31 am

    Ooh, Lauren! You’ve asked the right girl. One of my best friends and I love your books AND we’re avid playlist fans. And by “fans” I mean listeners-to, makers-of, and critics-about. Possibly on the professional level. PREPARE YOURSELF for an amazing musical experience.

    …are you prepared? In no particular order: “Henrietta & Miles, or Why We Love Banter.”

    1) “Cara Mia” Mans Zelmerlow [Hot Swedish man, check. English language, check. Amazing pop song about a beautiful woman, check. You have to YouTube this one!]

    2) “Paradise” Ana Laan [yes, it’s the Dove commercial song. It’s also about Fun and Touching.]

    3) “Sunday Morning” Maroon 5
    4) “Sex” The Pipettes
    5) “Sweet Talkin’ Woman” ELO [like Miles wouldn’t LOVE Electric Light Orchestra]

    6) “I Love Being Here With You” Peggy Lee
    7) “Call Me Irresponsible” Michael Buble [shockingly appropriate for Miles’ situation, yes?]

    8) “Dance Me To the End of Love” Madeleine Peyroux [especially tasty love song worthy of Hen]

    9) “I’m the Man who Loves You” Wilco
    10) “Distractions” Zero 7
    11) “Henrietta” The Fratellis [why, yes, this song happens to be the most fun ever AND is actually titled “Henrietta”!]

    12) “Mrs. Darcy” Jean-Yves Thibaudet [from the Pride and Prejudice movie soundtrack. And yes, I know P&P isn’t necessarily the best Austen parallel for the Black Tulip…but it’s a darling song. And so period-appropriate!]

    13) “Toothpaste Kisses” The Maccabees
    14) “Don’t Speak” No Doubt [for that “break up” period between lovely kisses]

    15) “I’ll Make Love To You” Boyz II Men [no…no comment needed]

    16) “The Story” Brandi Carlisle
    17 “The Word of Your Body” Duncan Sheik [from the soundtrack to the musical Spring Awakening. It’s not 100% appropriate to this book 100% of the time or anything, but some of the lyrics are spot-on and generally have something to do with Hen and Miles slowly realizing how blatantly physically attractive they find the other.]

    18) “Every Time We Touch” CASCADA
    19) “The One” The Backstreet Boys
    20) “Oh, It Is Love” Hellogoodbye

    This is SO on my iPod. …on to Geoff and Letty?

  7. Meg on October 2, 2009 at 12:33 am

    …hahaha. Oh, Internet. Thanks for interpreting 8 has a Cool Happy Face.

  8. Lizzy on October 2, 2009 at 8:47 am

    I always envisioned the trip to Selwick Hall to the song Won’t Go Home Without You by Maroon 5 it fit Hen and Miles so perfectly.

  9. Lauren on October 2, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    Meg, you are AMAZING! I love this list.

  10. lAUra on October 2, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    this is a little off topic, but there was a Scarlet Pimpernel musical on Broadway, and i think it has the most AMAZING songs. you should all look it up!

    this clip is a little harder to understand, but hilarious none the less. i want to see this show!!!

    and here is an all female theatre company in japan that also put on the show:


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