After being delayed due to COVID, the much-anticipated show finally landed on Amazon this March. From hair to outfits, music to locations, the show immerses its viewers in the vibrant yet gritty music scene of the '70s. But how did the cast and crew bring the story to life, and what's it all about? 1. It's about a fictional band called Daisy Jones and the Six 2. It's based on a best-selling book by Taylor Jenkins-Reid
Jenkins-Reid is perhaps most known for
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Daisy Jones and the Six, both of which are in her "famous women quartet" of books, alongside Malibu Rising and Carrie Soto is Back.
All four books focus on the lives of fictional famous women, but are written as though the main characters are real and supplemented with news columns and magazine articles about the stars to build that sense of reality.
Jenkins-Reid fleshes out the characters and their lives so well that many
questioned if these icons were actually real stars of yesteryear. Kayla Oaddams / WireImage 3. It's done in the style of a documentary 4. While Daisy Jones and the Six wasn't a real band, its foundations are definitely grounded in reality
Okay, let me give you some clues.
A band that was big in the '70s with both female and male members. A female keyboardist. Both male and female lead vocalists. Tumultuous inter-band relationships. Sound familiar? Yep, it's Fleetwood Mac.
Rumours era saw the band at odds with each other constantly, writing songs that were thinly veiled jabs at their fellow bandmates. Off stage, their dynamic was closer to that of enemies than friends, but somehow, one of the '70s biggest rock albums came out of that melting pot of hatred and resentment.
After a couple more albums, the band split, before reuniting in 1997 for a concert called 'The Dance'. How they created such an iconic album while waging a civil war amongst themselves was a mystery to many, and one that fans never really got an answer to.
When Taylor Jenkins-Reid watched the reunion concert, she couldn't help but notice the tension in the air, and the way Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham looked at each other during songs. This enduring mystery sparked the idea for Jenkins-Reid's book, which would replicate Fleetwood Mac's arc, but give the fans the closure they'd sought for decades. (
Collider) Richard E. Aaron / Redferns 5. Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham's dynamic amongst themselves and the rest of the band is exactly what Daisy and Billy's relationship was born from
Watch any of the studio scenes in the show and you can see the palpable tension between Daisy, Billy, and the rest of the band. With Daisy and Billy passive-aggressively penning songs for one another to sing and forcing them onto the album, the Amazon Prime show is hugely reminiscent of the way Fleetwood Mac worked together.
When her song "Silver Springs" was removed from the album
Rumours, Fleetwood Mac singer Stevie Nicks said: "I started to scream bloody murder and probably said every horrible mean thing that you could possibly say to another human being, and walked back in the studio completely flipped out. I said, ‘well, I’m not gonna sing “I Don’t Want to Know”. I am one-fifth of this band.
And they said. ‘Well, if you don’t like it, you can either (a) take a hike or (b) you better go out there and sing “I Don’t Want to Know” or you’re only gonna have two songs on the record.’ And so, basically, with a gun to my head, I went out and sang ‘I Don’t Want to Know’. And they put ‘Silver Springs’ on the back of ‘Go Your Own Way’.”
Why was Stevie so attached to "Silver Springs"? Well, because she wrote it for bandmate and fellow lead singer, Lindsey. She explained at the reunion that inspired Jenkins-Reid that she wanted Lindsey to know: "I’m so angry with you. You will listen to me on the radio for the rest of your life, and it will bug you. I hope it bugs you."
“It’s not lyrically based on ‘Silver Springs’ at all, and it wouldn’t sound anything like it,” author Taylor told
The Guardian. “But that concept of a woman’s right to be angry is absolutely based on Stevie Nicks singing ‘Silver Springs’ at Lindsey Buckingham during their reunion show, The Dance.”
This whole story could have been written about Daisy and Billy, so the inspiration is clearly seen throughout the show.
Amazon Prime Video / Via youtube.com 6. The show was executive produced by Reese Witherspoon and her company Hello Sunshine, and she was adamant that the band would be as real as possible
Co-producer Lauren Neustadter
said lip-syncing was never on the table, and that the band needed to really be a band. Reese, who sang her own vocals in her Oscar-winning role as June Carter Cash in Walk The Line, "knew what a challenge it would be, but also knew exactly what was possible".
Talking about the cast's musical achievements,
Reese said: “I’m just their biggest fan. I watched how hard they worked for seven, eight months of rehearsing, learning the instruments and trying to play in sync. They did that and it’s such a huge accomplishment.” Axelle / FilmMagic 7. The actors learned their instruments and sung the material 8. They were thrown into the deep end, living out every aspect of the band's lives
Showrunner Scott Neustadter
said: "A week before we started shooting, my wife (producer Lauren Neustadter) was like, 'they're very comfortable, but they've never performed for a group, for a crowd. And I need to know that they can do that. Because if they can do it, they'll be fine into a camera.' We wanted to seem as authentic as we could, so we made them do a concert."
They invited over 100 people from Prime Video to witness the band perform. The group was given a set list and absolutely no help, but according to Neustadter: "It was them and the instruments and they had to sing and they had to perform and they killed it."
Recalling the experience, Sam Claflin
said, "It was a strange experience. It was the first time we were all in costume together, and we were on a stage. And at the last minute, they were like, 'Oh, can you also introduce each song and do some banter between each number?'" Amazon Prime Video / Via youtube.com 9. The songs we hear in the show are the official recorded versions, but the cast's musical skills were tapped into whenever they could be
Josh Whitehouse, who plays bassist Eddie in the show, said, "We always had a live feed going out of all of our instruments. So if somebody [did] like a little cool thing and they wanted to keep it, then they could take the audio and mix it into the track."
Amazon Prime Video / Via youtube.com 10. Exec producer Reese Witherspoon was a big part of the behind the scenes, but she was "desperate" to get a star turn with the band
the Hollywood Reporter: "One prerequisite for every project that we do (at Hello Sunshine) is: would I want to be in it? I desperately wanted to be in this project, but there’s nothing for me to play. I would even play the tambourine in this because I love it so much.” Michael Buckner / Variety via Getty Images 11. Despite Daisy actor Riley Keough being the granddaughter of none other than Elvis Presley, Riley had never sung before the show 12. Sam Claflin "butchered" Elton John's "Your Song" in his audition for the role of Billy
Sam Claflin said he auditioned when most of the cast had already been hired and had no idea what it was about or that it was a novel.
While he described himself as a
"very competent shower singer," being thrown into the studio was daunting for Claflin, who said, laughing: "The first time I ever walked into a recording studio was my audition for this, and the way they tell you to make love to a microphone was something that was very brand new to me."
His cover of "Your Song" may not have been good enough to make the album, but author Taylor Jenkins-Reid said Sam won her over when he performed a scene where Billy refuses to pick up his baby daughter after returning home from rehab.
said, "I saw a lot of auditions for Billy over a long period of time. I watched that scene and cried. And that was when I was like, ‘They’ll figure out if you can sing or not.’ I don’t care.”
Talking about his experience learning to not only sing but also convincingly front a '70s rock band, Claflin
said it was a comfort that costar and fellow lead singer Riley Keough had no experience either: "For me, it was nice knowing that I was going on this musical journey with someone who had no musical experience either. She’d never sung before." Amazon Prime Video / Via youtube.com 13. There's an Easter egg in the opening credits 14. Camila and Karen are pals on screen, but they were besties off-screen
Camila and Suki's friendship isn't just acting on the show.
Camila recalled a time when she and Suki got in trouble for chatting too much during takes.
She laughed as
she reminded Suki of the moment in an interview for Town and Country Magazine, saying, "Do you remember the Timothy Olyphant scene, when he's talking to Billy, to Sam Claflin, and they're sitting in the front and they're like 'Quiet in the back!' And it's just like me and Suki having a beer in the background—and we forget that we're supposed to mime. And we're like, 'so tell me everything.' Like, 'Quiet Suki and Cami, we can hear you!' Story continues
Suki followed up, saying, "Yeah, we definitely had that natural friendship. Our friendship evolved [quickly]—when you meet someone and start working with them and spend like 12 hours a day together for two years, you know everything about each other's lives and start dissecting everything and that bleeds into the show."
15. In case of life imitates art, the album of songs from the show reached #1 in the US on iTunes 16. While it's an age-old tale of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, Riley Keough wanted to ensure the topic of addiction and substance abuse was approached respectfully
Given her family history (grandad Elvis Presley, mom Lisa Marie and younger brother Benjamin struggled with addiction), Riley said: "Because this is something I’ve experienced in my family, I wanted the moments in which you see Daisy’s addiction to not feel glamorous, to make sure that those moments had weight to them, that we’re seeing the humanity behind the closed doors of what people are perceiving to be glamour."
Axelle / FilmMagic 17. Similar to Riley, Sebastian Chacon saw parallels between his own life and his character, drummer Warren Rojas
Sebastian said, "Warren has a great sense of our problems being luxury and that every issue that we have to deal with is like ‘wow, I’m blessed that I have to have this issue.
Growing up, I had the same kind of thing. My parents are both immigrants from South America, and they grew up in conditions where they couldn’t even imagine the life that I’m living right now. Warren — the way that I put him together as a Columbia dude born in 1950 — couldn’t possibly imagine having any of these luxuries.”
Corey Nickols / Getty Images for IMDb 18. Inspiration came from some unusual places...
Obviously, Fleetwood Mac was a big inspiration for the band, but strangely enough, the Australian kids' band the Wiggles also got more popular when they added a red-headed female musician to their line-up!
Author Taylor Jenkins-Reid said: "I did not directly take anything from the Wiggles, but when I started watching the Wiggles with my kid, I got very involved in the drama and how it resembled so many of the other bands I used for inspiration like ABBA, Wings, No Doubt, and Sonic Youth.”
Lisa Maree Williams / Getty Images 19. From inspiration down under to inspiration from the Pride Lands...
Josh Whitehouse, who plays outspoken bassist Eddie, often clashes horns with frontman Billy. As an inspiration for his character, Josh looked to none other than Scar from
The Lion King!
said: "Every time Billy’s walking out the room, it’s like Billy's trying to steal the kingdom and take everybody away…it’s like (Eddie)’s trying to take over but in a very sneaky way. And then he’s always being so nice to Billy to his face, as well. To an extent, he’s a villain. But at the same time, I hope that I brought enough life to him that people see the goodness in him as well.” Corey Nickols / Getty Images for IMDb 20. The cast and crew were all about the authenticity
The show was determined to be as faithful to the era it calls its home, employing a
historical drug specialist who came to the set and explained the attitude and awareness of addiction during the '70s.
said: “I think that (author) Taylor did such a good job at researching what that looked like in that era, and there wasn’t as much awareness of things like addiction during that time. We actually met with a guy who came in and explained what the thoughts were about addiction in the ’70s and how it was and wasn’t thought of, and that was really helpful. So, I think it was fairly accurate in terms of the awareness around addiction at the time.”
They also had Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth come to the writers' room once a week as a consultant, with co-showrunner Will Graham
saying: "She spoke to what it’s like to be onstage and to have this electricity happen around you."
Another way to keep the show feeling authentic — though perhaps a less above-board one — was forcing moonshine on Sam Claflin to quell his stage nerves!
"I didn't even know it was a real drink,"
he said. Amazon Prime Video / Via youtube.com So, now I'll need to find a support group because the book and this show made me stan a band that not only can I never see live, but don't actually exist. A gif of a woman crying, saying "how am I supposed to find another you?"" ABC / Via giphy.com Have you been watching Daisy Jones and the Six? Are you loving it?! Let me know in the comments!