I'm looking for songs about selling your soul to the devil.
June 20, 2007 3:31 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for songs about Faust or deals with the devil, a la "Devil Went Down to Georgia" or "Gretchen am Spinnrade."

New, old, classical, punk, folk; any length or genre. Any suggestions?
posted by honeydew to Media & Arts (44 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
 
I'm assuming you already know Robert Johnson's Crossroad Blues?
posted by nerdcore at 3:33 PM on June 20, 2007


Friend of the Devil by the Dead and NIB by Sabbath come to mind.
posted by veronica sawyer at 3:36 PM on June 20, 2007


King Contrary Man by The Cult
posted by The World Famous at 3:36 PM on June 20, 2007


Tribute by Tenacious D
posted by jtfowl0 at 3:36 PM on June 20, 2007


The Fall's "Dktr Faustus."

Much of Randy Newman's "Faust" album.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 3:53 PM on June 20, 2007


The album "The Black Rider" by Tom Waits (actually the music to a musical of the same name) is all about that.
posted by jacobm at 3:57 PM on June 20, 2007


"Conversation With the Devil" by Ray Wylie Hubbard (which refers back to "Devil Went Down to Georgia," in fact)
posted by pineapple at 3:58 PM on June 20, 2007


Bob Dylan's "Ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest".
posted by dan g. at 3:58 PM on June 20, 2007


Hard to find, but "Faust" from the Phantom of the Paradise...the whole movie, really! Classic.
posted by misha at 4:02 PM on June 20, 2007


Spanish Train by Chris de Burgh tells of a card game played between god and the devil for the souls of people travailing on a train. The devil cheats and wins!
posted by gergtreble at 4:07 PM on June 20, 2007


Heres a wiki-link about Spanish train.
posted by gergtreble at 4:12 PM on June 20, 2007


Umm, Sympathy for the Devil. Though, I guess it's not really about a deal with the devil, just about the man himself.
posted by Brittanie at 4:22 PM on June 20, 2007


It's perhaps a bit outside of your Faustain remit, but Michael by Prefab Sprout fits the general bill, albeit from the other side; "Michael if you're listening/Michael who stayed true/One of us got out of line when Paradise was new/One of us was exiled and the one who wasnt's you"
posted by baggers at 4:38 PM on June 20, 2007


Not exactly a "deal with the devil," but the subject matter is close:

Lake of Fire - Nirvana
posted by SlyBevel at 4:46 PM on June 20, 2007


This soundtrack to the 1968 Dudley Moore movie "Bedazzled" is all about that, and has a great 60's Go-Go vibe to boot (it is a KICKASS comedy). The title track (track 8) was also covered by Bongwater. So, so worth it.
posted by sourwookie at 4:54 PM on June 20, 2007


Another sorta close idea - The Pogues 'Down In The Ground Where The Dead Men Go'
posted by pupdog at 4:58 PM on June 20, 2007


1) Most interesting large-scale classical pieces:
- Boulanger's Faust et Hélène (a cantata)
- Gounod's Faust (an opera)

2) Here's an excellent page, very comprehensive, listing hundreds of Faust pieces in classical music.
posted by allterrainbrain at 4:59 PM on June 20, 2007


Another vote for Randy Newman's Faust - it's freaking fantastic, and has Don Henley as Faust, Newman as the Devil, and James Taylor as God. Throw in Elton John and Linda Rondstadt and Bonnie Raitt, tough to go wrong.
posted by ORthey at 5:00 PM on June 20, 2007


Emmylou Harris, "Raise the Dead," which goes, in part:

"Robert Johnson had a hellhound on his trail
Drove him to the coffin like a hammer and a nail
It takes a powerful man to carry that load
When your tryin' to beat the devil to the old crossroads
I wrestled the devil lived to testify but I'll never get out of your love alive"
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:16 PM on June 20, 2007


"The Devil is my Friend" by Jazz Butcher... Hilarious.

I went out one spring morning,
To find myself a friend
Someone I could believe in
Until the very end
I met up with the devil
He was sitting in a bar
He bought me fifteen rum and cokes
And then he went too far.

posted by OneOliveShort at 5:50 PM on June 20, 2007


There is a verse from the Weight:

I picked up my bag, I went lookin' for a place to hide;
When I saw Carmen and the Devil walkin' side by side.
I said, "Hey, Carmen, come on, let's go downtown."
She said, "I gotta go, but m'friend can stick around."

Maybe Jack on Fire by the Gun Club

Devil's Chasing Me by Reverend Horton Heat

Suicidal Tendencies Possessed
posted by Sailormom at 6:18 PM on June 20, 2007


In the final episode of Futurama, "The Devil's Hands are Idle Playthings," Fry makes a deal with the Robot Devil to exchange hands. Fry uses the Robot Devil's hands to compose an opera. The opera's premiere is interrupted by the Robot Devil demanding his hands back, and the opera from that point is an "ad libbed" description of Fry's deal with the Robot Devil. Sample lyric:

"Without these hands
I can't complete
The opera that was captivating her
But if I keep them
And she marries him
Then he probably won't
want me dating her."
posted by ROTFL at 6:25 PM on June 20, 2007


The entire musical "Damn Yankees" is about this. One song comes to mind: "Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets" (I believe Lola is a succubus or demon sent to seduce the protagonist, who does somehow sell/lease his soul to the devil).
posted by amtho at 7:12 PM on June 20, 2007


Who Will Survive and What Will be Left of Them? by Murder By Death is a concept album all about a village in Mexico being attacked by the Devil.
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 7:13 PM on June 20, 2007


The Devil Came Up to Michigan by K.M.C. Kru
The Devil Went Down to Scunthorpe by the Toy Dolls
posted by milquetoast at 7:16 PM on June 20, 2007


Bauhaus' Party of the First Part (which appeared as an extra track on the import CD re-issue of The Sky's Gone Out), though the "lyrics" are a collage of samples from the short film The Devil and Daniel Mouse, set to music.
posted by sad_otter at 7:33 PM on June 20, 2007


Nazareth, "Sold My Soul" ("I sold my soul to the devil")
Black Spider Dumpling (John D. Twitty), "Sold It to the Devil"
Better Than Ezra, "Devil Girl"

According to Wikpedia, this is a photo of the original "crossroads."

I'm assuming you already know Robert Johnson's Crossroad Blues?

Robert Johnson's song is about hitchhiking. Tommy Johnson (no relation) originated the sold-my-soul-at-the-crossroads story, and Robert Johnson adopted it later.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:06 PM on June 20, 2007


Some of my first contributions were already mentioned. I've always been fascinated by the Faust myth in popular culture. Here's a few more off the top of my head

The Pulsars - Owed To A Devil
OK GO - A Good Idea At The Time
Muse - Take A Bow
Specimen -Sharp Teeth Pretty Teeth

I'll post more when I think of them.
posted by ktrey at 8:26 PM on June 20, 2007


Teresa Brewer – Pickle Up A Doodle
Momus – Stefano Zarelli
posted by ktrey at 8:29 PM on June 20, 2007


Voltaire -- When You're Evil
posted by anaelith at 8:46 PM on June 20, 2007


Azure Ray, "The Devil's Feet" (lovely song)
posted by fuzzbean at 8:59 PM on June 20, 2007


"Way Down in the Hole" -- Tom Waits
"Devil Inside" -- INXS
posted by solongxenon at 9:11 PM on June 20, 2007


Titties and Beer - Frank Zappa
posted by Eothele at 9:38 PM on June 20, 2007


Not exactly a "deal with the devil," but the subject matter is close:

Lake of Fire - Nirvana
posted by SlyBevel at 4:46 PM on June 20


Originally written and performed by the Meat Puppets.

*cries, realizes she is old*
posted by padraigin at 10:16 PM on June 20, 2007


Up the Devil's Pay by Old 97's


More wikipedia
posted by gingerbeer at 10:17 PM on June 20, 2007


Seconding Who Will Survive and What Will be Left of Them?
posted by churl at 10:25 PM on June 20, 2007


Switchfoot, maybe?
posted by TheFuse at 10:47 PM on June 20, 2007


It's more like a suite, but Stravinsky's The Soldier's Tale. English language narration is common.
posted by aliasless at 12:00 AM on June 21, 2007


Honey White, Honey White, Honey White made a deal for some angel food.
8212; Morphine
posted by aneel at 12:29 AM on June 21, 2007


"Little Piece At A Time" by David Wilcox on Big Times in a Small Town: The Vineyard Tapes
posted by Jahaza at 12:45 AM on June 21, 2007


I agree with Pineapple. "Conversation With the Devil" by Ray Wylie Hubbard is a lesser known but FANTASTIC song. It's available on iTunes as well.

-dm
posted by donmak at 2:51 AM on June 21, 2007


The Stone Roses: Driving South
Zappa: Titties and Beer
posted by boogieboy at 4:15 AM on June 21, 2007


"Fable with No Moral" by Quasi off the excellent Field Studies album.
I went and sold my soul so I could pay my rent / I waited by the mail, but the check was never sent / So I called the Devil up, but I just got his machine / I left an angry message, said "I gotta have the green" / I didn't give up then, but I made another plan / If Satan didn't want my soul I'd sell it to the man / I tried to find the number, but it wasn't in the book / I'd get the money anyhow, no matter what it took / No matter what it took. / No paragon of virtue, at least I'm not a thief / It's so easily justified but always leads to grief / So I got a piece of cardboard and made myself a sign / To sell my soul below the market rate was my design / I went down on the street and I tried to make the deal / A Land Rover drove right by with Satan at the wheel / He saw what I was doing and said / "That's not yours to sell! / You'll get your check tomorrow and I'll see your ass in Hell / So you'd better spend it well."
posted by safetyfork at 6:39 AM on June 21, 2007


Warren Zevon, Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner.
posted by scalefree at 2:38 PM on June 21, 2007


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