Sound Advice

Twin Peaks Composer Angelo Badalamenti Drops a Posthumous Playlist for Balenciaga

Angelo Badalamenti for Balenciaga Music

This is SOUND ADVICE, a weekly destination for playlists curated by Interview’s friends, enemies, and lovers. This week, we’re featuring the latest Balenciaga Music collab, a tribute to the late composer Angelo Badalamenti and his alma mater, the Manhattan School of Music. Hand-selected before his passing in 2022, the playlist features songs from the composer’s infamous Twin Peaks soundtrack, as well as selections from colleagues including Nina Simone and Marianne Faithfull. The release is accompanied by a small collection of merch emblazoned with Badalamenti’s score for the 1992 Barcelona Summer Olympics. Some of the ledger lines are left blank, perhaps to signify Badalamenti passing on the torch to those who will continue his legacy, like his daughter Danielle, who answered a few questions about the playlist for our Sound Advice series.



Who are your favorite classical composers? I respond to Rachmaninoff because his compositions are very powerful. I also enjoy Tchaikovsky, especially around the holidays.

What did you listen to growing up?  I was first exposed to the singers/songwriters of the ’70s because that was what my parents had on the radio. I have many beautiful early memories framed by that music. As a teen, I turned into a rock fan. I would save up all of my money to buy the latest albums from bands like Journey, Ozzy, and Metallica. Then when I was about fifteen, my Dad came into my room, and handed me the album Pearl by Janis Joplin. He simply said, ” I think you’re gonna love this. Give it a shot.” Well, he was right, as always, and it opened up a new world.

Do you play any instruments? No. Not that my parents didn’t try very hard to make that happen. They gave me lessons in piano and flute. For a short time, I even played the French horn that my father used in college. It wasn’t long before I sorted out that I was more cut out for the visual arts, just like my mother. My brother, Andre, followed in my father’s musical footsteps, as a gifted classical clarinetist.

Do you have a favorite movie soundtrack? I’d have to go with the soundtrack from one of my favorite movies, The Big Lebowski. It has an eclectic mix of great tracks from the likes of Bob Dylan, Nina Simone, Townes Van Zandt, and Kenny Rogers. Each song fits seamlessly into its scene, and adds so much to the film.

What’s a music taste red flag? I don’t think I have one. Music weaves itself into our lives and enriches us in so many ways. There shouldn’t be judgement based on the kind of art that one responds to.

What’s the most underrated music genre? Surf Punk.

How would you describe your father’s taste in music? Anything with a lot of soul, interesting progressions, and gorgeous melodies. I also need to mention what a fan he was of Rod Stewart. Every time Rod would come on the radio, Dad would say something like, “Listen to this guy! Just listen…he’s got it all.”

Do you have a favorite project of his? In addition to his magnificent work on all parts of Twin Peaks, I also love his very moving score for Stalingrad.

What is your favorite track on the playlist? It’s a tie between “Sycamore Trees” by Jimmy Scott, and “I Hold No Grudge” by Nina Simone. Both songs are like a perfect storm. The haunting melodies, enigmatic lyrics, and compelling vocals, make the hair stand up on my arms.