The Wire included various commercial songs. These songs usually originated from diegetic sources such as stereo systems in cars, bars, and restaurants. A Spotify Playlist

Season 1

Song Title Artist Episodes featuring Sources
"Way Down in the Hole" Blind Boys of Alabama "The Target" Opening theme
"Izzo (H.O.V.A.)" Jay-Z "The Target" D'Angelo and Wee-Bey in the car
"Use Me" Bill Withers "The Target" D'Angelo at Orlando's
"The Streets of Baltimore" Gram Parsons & Emmylou "The Target" McNulty and Bunk at bar
"Grace Jones" Pull Up to the Bumper "The Target" Shardene and D'Angelo
"The Fall" Blake Leyh "The Target" Closing theme

s1.02 D'Angelo and Avon in the community centre Aaliyah - Got to Give it Up

D'Angelo and Avon on the stairs at the community center Chic - Good Times

Prez, Herc & Carver drinking beer and arguing about the case Guess Who - American woman

McNulty is drinking in his car Mickey & Silvia - Love is strange

s1.03 D'Angelo goes to drop off the cash at the club Ja Rule - Down ass bitch(the link is the censored version)

Back in the club talking to the stripper Rufus & Chaka Khan - Tell Me Something Good

McNulty disturbs Pearlman to ask her about the pagers Lucinda Williams - 2 kool 2 be 4 gotten

McNulty in the police station listening to the radio Dirty Old Town  (by Pierce Turner according to Wikipedia - the link is to The Pogues' version, but it's definitely not that one that's used in the show) (also check out the version of the dubliners!)

s1.04 McNulty and Lester Freeman in the bar before McNulty goes to Kima's place Miles Davis - All Blues

s1.05 Avon's Radio alarm clock thingy while he gets dressed Michael Franti & Spearhead - Oh My God (links to accoustic version)

Drunk McNulty warbling to himself with his Ikea beds Star of the County Down (links to a version by the Orthodox Celts)

D'Angelo talking to Orlando and asking the stripper out Poe - Hey Pretty

s1.06 Avon visits the pit in slomo Cytoplastik - Wax Music Box

Lester asking if it cost Daniels at the end Duke Ellington - Fleurette Africaine

s1.07 Bunk & McNulty in the bar Loretta Lyne & Conway Twitty - You're the reason our kids are ugly (cover version)

s1.08 McNulty's kids following Stringer The Tokens - The lion sleeps tonight

s1.09 Avon and Stringer being followed after the game Michael Franti and Spearhead - Rock the Nation

s1.10 Kima approaches her doom Talib Kwelli & Mos Def (they form Blackstar) - Hater Players

s1.11 Weebey and D'Angelo go and meet the fishies Masta Ace ft Strick - Unfriendly game

Kima's gf crying Nina Simone's - Sugar in My Bowl

s1.12 Wallace's last meal in the diner Paul Anka - Put Your Head on my Shoulder

s1.13 Ending montagey thing Jesse Winchester - Step by Step

S2 Theme: Tom Waits – Way down in the hole (original version) S3 Theme: The Neville Brothers – Way down in the hole S4 Theme: DoMaJe– Way down in the hole S5 Theme: Steve Earle - Way down in the hole

Season 2

s2.01 Looking Glass - Brandy (You're A Fine Girl)

The Nighthawks - Sixteen Tons

The Stooges & Iggy Pop- search and destroy --> album: Raw power (also on The Life Aquatic ost)

Meryl Streep & Lily Tomlin - A Prairie Home Companion - not sure if this is the right version

s2.02 Aretha Franklin - The House That Jack Built

Lyle Lovett - Goodbye to Carolina -->album:I Love Everybody

s2.03 War - Cisco kid

Dante expresses his jealous side to Omar: Sean Paul - Get Busy

s2.04 Velvelettes - He Was Really Saying Something

Frankie Lymon - I Promise To Remember

Irma Thomas - Ruler Of My Heart

Gram Parsons & Emmylou Harris - Streets of Baltimore

Steppenwolf - Magic Carpet Ride

Tammy Wynette - Your Good Girl's Gonna Go Bad

s2.05 Akrobatik – The hand that rocks the cradle

Maria Muldaur - Midnight at the Oasis

s2.06 ..anyone?

s2.07 Diana Ross & The Supremes - Love Child


Pogues - Transmetropolitan --> Album: Red roses for me

s2.09 Mary Wells - You Beat Me To the Punch

s2.10 Johnny Cash - I Walk the Line

Joan Jett - Roadrunner

s2.11 Stelios Kazantzidis - To Psomi tis Xanthias (Bread in a Foreign Land)

Stelios Kazantzidis - Efige Efige--> album possibly: Palia Laika

s2.12 Steve Earle - I Feel Alright

s2.13 Joan Jett and the Blackhearts - Have You Ever Seen the Rain -->album: The Hit List (s2e13)

Season 3

An updated Shaft Theme

s3.02 Ludacris - Stand Up

s3.03 George Clinton - Atomic Dog

The Pogues - Body of an American

Shane McGowan - Sally MacLennane(Might be it..(version by the pogues

DJ Technics - My Life

s3.04 Biggie Smalls - My Downfall -->Album: Life After Death

Ludacris - Splash waterfalls

s3.05 War- Me and Baby Brother


s3.07 Sheryl Crow - Are You Strong Enough to Be My Man?

LL Cool J - Head Sprung

s3.08 Bob Marley - Buffalo Soldiers

Hank Williams - I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry (not sure)

J-Kwon - Everybody in the Club Gettin Tipsy?

some Outkast according to a poster on the HBO BB


s3.10 Dem Franchise Boyz - In my White Tees

Music Explosion - Little Bit of Soul


s3.12 Snoop Dogg - Drop It Like It's Hot

Solomon Burke – Fast train --> album: Don't give up on me

Season 4

Bodie's corner Dead Meadow - At Her Open Door

Slim Charles in SUV Bone Thugz-n-Harmony - Handle The Vibe

Outside club with Fruit
Kid Kurrupt - Something Wrong

Fruit gets shot Elephant Man - Krazy Don't know if this is it..

Carcetti comes home The Chi-Lites -(For God's Sake) Give More Power To The People

Carcetti's political ad
Blake Leyh - The Patriot Act

Carcetti tours the neighborhood alleys
Black Toast Music - Back Home

On the corner with Kevin & Randy Mobb Deep - Survival of The Fittest

Craps in the alley Parliament - Tear The Roof Off The Sucker (Give Up The Funk) (very short piece)

End Titles
Blake Leyh - The Fall (for link see themes)

4.02: Prez cleans the classroom Johnny Cash - Ring of Fire

Bodie's corner Chingy - Ur Uh Freak

Carcetti in police bar George Jones - White Lightning

Marlo hands out cash on corner Black Toast Music - Spread The Word (Black toast music site)
Marlo hands out cash on corner
Black Toast Music - Spanish Fly

Donut steals an SUV Ying Yang Twins - Salt Shaker

Namond comes home Ohio Players - Love Roller coaster

4.03: Omar in deli Sm Town - 2nd Winter (I warn you..this is just ..weird)
Chris & Snoop in SUV Black Toast Music - Drop From Below
Michael handles junkies The Diplomats - Crunk Muzik
Omar & Ronaldo in van Paco - Brinquen Mi Raza
Greggs in store Alfonso Christian Lover - Can't You See
McNulty at home
The Iguanas - 9 Volt Heart
McNulty at home The Iguanas - Arrimate
Colvin in hotel room Max Harris - Cool Stepper
Omar robs store Macy Gray - Why Didn't You Call Me

Ext funeral home car by Black Toast Music - Bullet To The Brain
Funeral home organ Billy Sherwood - Organic

4.04: Card game The Wild Magnolias - Smoke My Peace Pipe
Marlo in drugstore Super Junior - Oh Nuel Man Eun
Chris pulls up in SUV Black Toast Music - Git A Move On
Rim shop Chamillionaire - Ridin'dirty

Donut drives by Damian Champ - Jumpin' Like Rope
Re-up car drops drugs DJ Technics - Pumpkin
Royce's poker game Jerome Sedeyn - La Marelle
Bunk * Freamon in bar The Isley Brothers - This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak For You)
Butchie's bar Deacon John - Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out
Omar robs card game The Meters - Cissy Strut

Cutty drops off the boys Black Toast Music - This Is War

4.05: Carcetti at flea market Clint Eastwood - Another One Bites The Dust

Prez in classroom at lunch time Chris Brown - Yo (Excuse Me Miss)

Car by outside Andre's store Black Toast Music - Walkin' The Wild
Chris robs store Alicia Keys - A Woman's Worth

Freamon & Bunk search sewers The O'Jays - Backstabbers

Chris & Marlo in SUV Vybz Kartel Feat. Wayne Marshall - New Millenium


Church Church choir - Lead Me Guide Me

Church Opus1 - Psalm
Carcetti & Clay Davis Black Toast Jazz - One More Once
Cutty jogs Curtis Mayfield - Move On Up (Extended Version)
Boys in Donut's SUV Black Toast - Attention
Omar in store Rick James - Give it To Me Baby

Namond at home Angela Johnson - Got To Let It Go
Namond's video game Blake Leyh - Robots In The Hood
Carcetti victory rally Opus1 - Three Deuces
Carcetti victory rally Sister Sledge - We Are Family

4.07: Namond's corner Dierks Bentley - Lot of Leavin' Left to Do

Namond's corner Diablo & Darkroom Productions - Jail Flick (it's in the list)
Sherrod & runner in car Lil' Flip - You'z a Trick

Greggs searches alley Ray Cash - Bumpin' My Music

Bubbles & Sherrod on street Rod Lee - Dance My Pain Away

4.08: Herc pulls over SUV Black Toast Music - Get It Done

Foerster's wake The Pogues - Body of An American

Prop Joe's store Funkadelic - Thumparella
Carcetti watches cops work Outkast - B.O.B.

Bunk in Andre's store Paula Campbell - Won't Love You Back
Namond's walkman
Black Toast Music - Hard Time
Marlo's courtyard Tyree Colion & Darkroom Productions - Soldierz Story
Bunk in Andre's Store Angela Johnson - Where's The Love
Daniels & Carcetti meet Black Toast Jazz - Another Moon

4.09: Prop Joe & Marlo talk Chamillionaire - Picture Perfect
Chris & Marlo Talk Mullyman & Darkroom Productions - Get Ready (Bodymore Soldiers)
Omar & Renaldo in van Alexis & Fido - Eso Ehh

Prop Joe's Store Harold Melvin & The Bluenotes - Don't Leave Me This Way

Michael at Store Pump Audio - Water
Colvin's car Billie Holiday - I Cover The Waterfront
Colvin in restaurant Black Toast Music - Highway 14
Daniels & Pearlman Alison Krauss & Union Station - Goodbye Is All We Have

Namond plays the car radio Three 6 Maffia - Poppin' My Collar

Andre & Slim Charles DMX - Lord Give Me A Sign

Donut steals an SUV Dirty Hartz - That's Da Sound (it's in the list)
Walker looks for Donut Tyree Colion & Darkroom Productions - Projects
Omar watches Marlo Black Toast Music - Before I Die
Kevin talks to Marlo Ray Cash - Dope Game (imeem..login to hear full version)
Bubbles in car William De Vaughn - Be Thankful For What You've Got

Herc's ringtone Three 6 Mafia - Stay Fly

Dinner at Colvin's house Solomon Burke - Got to Get You Off My Mind

Omar & Renaldo on stake out Khriz & Angel - Ven Bailalo

Bunk & McNulty at restaurant Joe Cocker - Feelin' Alright? (apparently also featured on the 'House' ost)
Bug's dad in convenience store Clarence Carter - Slip Away

4.11: Chinese restaurant The Chaozhou Ensemble - Gong Yan Shi Chun
Walker and boys on street Black Toast Music - What You Lookin' At
Omar & Renaldo on stakeout K'Luba - Carta Del Hijo Preso
Walker comes out of bar Martha Reeves and The Vandellas - Come and Get These Memories

Carcetti visits office Men At Work - Land Down under

McNulty & Bodie in restaurant Anthony Hamilton - Comin' From Where I'm From

Carcetti fundraiser Opus1 - Music Maker
Omar at Prop Joe's The Meters - Pocky Way

Chris talks to Marlo Dem Franchize Boys - Lean Wit It, Rock Wit It

4.12: Omar & Renaldo watch Cheese Pitbull ft Lil' John - Toma
Kenard & Namond on corner Diablo & Darkroom Productions - Round My Hood
Michael & Namond on street Black Toast Music - This Is a Raid
Omar in Butchie's Bar The Wild Magnolias - New Suit
Carcetti Waits Opus1 - Silent Night (plenty of other versions out there)
Carcetti Waits Opus1 - Joy To The World (plenty of other versions out there)
Carcetti Waits Opus1 - We Wish You A Merry Christmas (plenty of other versions out there)
Bunk & McNulty in bar Raymond Winnfield - Things Could Be Better
Prop Joe gets a call Funkadelic - In The Cabin of My Uncle Jam
Kimmy sings to guard Salt-n-Pepa - Get Up Everybody

4.13: Landsman in homicide office Jingle Bell Rock (The HBO site didn't mention who sings/which version they used)
Omar's gang wraps up Dueto Bertin Y Lalo - Corrido a Santa Adelaida
Dukie sees Michael in bed Tha Plague & Darkroom Productions - When You See Us (it's in the list)
Dukie outside high school Sqad Up & Darkroom Productions - I'm a Baller
Carcetti waits Opus1 - We Three Kings
Wilson & Parker talk in bar Al Green - Love and Happiness (apparently also featured on the Menace 2 society ost)
Season finale montage Paul Weller - I Walk on Guilded Splinters

Namond sees Donut in SUV Mullyman - The Life, The Hood, The Streetz (it's in the list)

Season 5

Marlo's Lair, McNulty Watches Eric B & Rakim - Eric B Is President

Chris & Michael talk on street Chamillionaire - Not A Criminal

Guy In Blue Car Buys Drugs On Corner The Nighthawks - Blind Love
Michael, Dukie, And Bug At Home Ne-Yo - Because Of You

Mcnulty And Detectives In Bar Slim Harpo - I'm a King Bee

Herc And Detectives In Bar Blondie - The Tide Is High

Mcnulty Drinks In A Bar Ernie K-Doe - Mother-In-Law

Newspaper Staff In Bar Davis - Do Me That Way
5.02: Mcnulty In Car, Has A Flat Boston - More Than a Feeling

Freamon Waits For Marlo Sarah Vaughan - Black Coffee

Freamon Sings In Car Erma Franklin - Piece Of My Heart

Freamon Listens To The Radio Etta James - Don't Cry Baby

Bunk, Freamon, Mcnulty Drink In Bar Donald Harrison - All My Love
Sc58 Bubbles And Waylon Talk On The Street Solomon Burke - Cry To Me

5.03 McNulty buys red ribbon The Fifth Dimension - Up Up And Away

Greek Diner
Lyra - To Tragoudi Xenitias
McNulty with woman in bar ? & The Mysterians - 96 Tears (? = a band/artist)
Wilson & Haynes meet in bar Eddie Houston - Away From Home
Greek Diner Markos Vamvakaris - Mi Me Pismatonis
Scene 44 Marlo Meets with Prop Joe Sterling Silver Starship - Booty Body Ready
Scene 52 McNulty and Gutierrez in coffee shop Salim Nourallah - Don't Be Afraid

Scene 55 Michael and the boys dropped off Hugh Mundell - Red Gold & Green
Haynes & Twigg in bar Kermit Ruffins - When I Die (You Better Second Line) (click the album 'Big easy' and listen :) )
Butchie's Bar Little Junior Parker - Mystery Train

Butchie's back room Junior Wells (& Mike Bloomfield) - Messin With The Kid

s5.04 Altercation On Michael's Corner Ogun Feat. Phathead - What You Know About Baltimore
Prop Joe Visits A Florist Barbara Lewis - Baby I'm Yours

Omar And Slim Charles Trouble Funk - Drop The Bomb

McNulty In The Bar The Clash - Train In Vain

Omar And Donnie Shortie - Street Legendz

s5.05 Cutty and Dukie talk at the gym Sly & The Family Stone - In Time

Mcnulty Meets Journos In Bar Tears For Fears - Everybody Wants To Rule The World (I personally also like the version that Nas did on Stillmatic!)
Omar And Donnie Wait In Car Joe Tex - Just Out Of Reach
Marlo's Crew Talk At The Rim Shop Shop Boyz - Party Like A Rock Star

Omar And Donnie Wait In Car The Temptations - Just My Imagination

The Mcnulty Boys At Home Dead Meadow - Beyond The Fields We Know
Omar And Donnie Wait In Car Smokey Robinson & Miracles - My Girl Has Gone

Omar And Donnie Wait In Car Curtis Mayfield & The Impressions - Gypsy Woman (this is a version with Bobby Womack & Curtis Mayfield..instead of The Impressions)

S5.06 Bunk Talks To Randy Don Ferquan (aka Quan) - Amerikkka's Pie (I can link to his myspace)
Landsman In His Office Patsy Cline - Walkin' After Midnight

Omar Steals Stash Mullyman - I'm Good There (according to his myspace it can be found on but I'm not a member there.)
McNulty Goes For A Drive The Pogues - Turkish Song Of The Damned
Also check out this website with: Major thanks goes out to a fan called Jeremiah and to Bendy1 (giving credit where credit is due ;).

s5.07 McNulty, Pearlman & Phelan In Diner Sam Cooke - Shake

Carver Picks Up Michael On His Corner G.E.M. - The Ooh Ahh Song (it's in the list of playable songs)
Fletcher Meets Bubbles At Soup Kitchen Zapp & Roger - Dance Floor

Greggs Assembles Ikea Maya Azucena - Down, Down -> Part 1 Part 2

Haynes In Cop Bar Little Walter - My Babe (not performed by Little Walter, but this guy makes a good alternative)
Omar And Savino In Alley Behind Club Ground Loop Music - Eurotrash
Haynes And Mello Talk In Bar The Nighthawks - I Told You So (You Should'a Known Better) (their website)
Greggs Assembles Ikea Again Erykah Badu - On & On

Michael's Corner Gets An Unexpected Visitor Bossman - Ayo (his myspace)

s5.08 Poot and Dukie In Shoe Store Lady D - Stay
Dozerman and Truck Check Out Rental Car Parliament - Every Booty (Get On Down) (US it sucks for me - rhapsody apparently got all tracks..but US only)
Kenard and Omar In Corner Store Choi Suk Jun - Let This As Nothing Happened
Bunk's Ringtone In Crime Lab Lou Rawls - You'll Never Find A Love Like Mine

Chris and Snoop In Suv Hurricane Chris - A Bay Bay

Freamon And Davis, Scene 65 Coleman Hawkins - I'm Lookin' Over A Four Leaf Clover

s5.09 Haynes & Ruby Talk In Coffee Shop Donald Harrison - Idris Song
Detectives Watch Monk & Cheese Ghostface - Be Easy

Herc & Guys Drink Around Car Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers - Refugee

Freamon & Clay Davis In Club Ramsey Lewis trio- The In Crowd

Haynes Meets Wiley At Veterans Hospital Thin Lizzy - Jail Break

Michael In Cab Bossman - So Fresh
Michael & Snoop In Suv T Pain ft Akon - Bartender

s5.10 Freamon & McNulty In Empty Bar Liz Carroll - The Green Mountain
McNulty Plays a Game With The Kids at Home Robert Plant & Alison Krauss - Rich Woman

Bubbles Brings Crabs Up For Rae Lafayette Gilchrist - Assume The Position
Wake In Bar Joe Shannon & John McGreevy - The Bucks Of Oranmore
Wake In Bar The Pogues - The Body Of An American

Exit Bar, Greggs Talks To McNulty & Freamon The Pogues - The Broad Majestic Shannon

Michael Sticks Up Rim Shop David Banner - K.O.
Montage The Blind Boys Of Alabama - Way Down In The Hole (see themes, way up)

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