The MCU features a plethora of amazing cameos. We naturally always get our cameo by Stan Lee and various shows brought in some familiar faces to either play themselves or have a minor role. Rob Zombie appears in the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise as the voice of Yondu’s Ravager ship. Luke Hemsworth played Thor in the short theatre performance at the beginning of Thor: Ragnarok alongside Matt Damon as Loki. There are even some rather small cameos with significant histories such as Garrett Morris’ short appearance in Ant-Man. This is a tribute to him having played the titular character in a short comedy sketch.
Luke Cage gave Method Man among many other artists a small role, especially with some performing as well. What elevates the Netflix show from the previously mentioned cameos is that a lot of cameos are in the form of musical guests. Many segments take place in the club Harlem’s Paradise with live performances in the background which add an extra element to the show’s overall theme and atmosphere.
It seems that showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker wasn’t completely satisfied with the number of cameos by the music community in his first season. They already went into a new territory by featuring live performances during various scenes set in Harlem’s Paradise.
“The show wasn’t a home run in terms of the music community. There were a lot of questions. No other Marvel show had featured [live] music.”
Billboard now confirms that the second season will include quite a variety of new performers, such as Evans, Joi & D-Nice, Gary Clark Jr., Esperanza Spalding, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, Ghostface Killah, Stephen Marley, Jadakiss, KRS-One, and Rakim. Coker really wanted to double down in the upcoming season, as he wants to use the show to also support many artists in the industry. They saw streaming bumps of artists that were featured in the first season, such as Jidenna‘s song “Long Live The Chief” getting a 2,135% increase after their appearance on the show.
Music plays an integral part in the franchise. The episodes are named after famous songs, such as the first season being titled according to Gang Starr songs. The second season will feature titles by Pete Rock and CL Smooth. Coker even reveals that Pete Rock is a comic book collector and fan of the character of Luke Cage. The second season will also be scored once again by Adrian Younge and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, who were also responsible for the first seasons’ iconic soundtrack.
“Some of the funkiest records ever came out of Muscle Shoals and none of them were black, so that’s not what that was about,” he says. “It was about [composers] who not only understood hip-hop in the deepest sense of making the music, but at the same time could put on another hat when composing, they could use strings. They are as important to the success of the show as anyone in the cast, anyone directing, anyone writing, producing, period. My partnership with the two of them is a non-negotiable.”
The more we hear about the show’s musical direction the more we cannot wait until the next season is released. Music is such an integral aspect of the show so it will be interesting to see how they expand upon the already impressive first season. The list of new talent joining the show is very promising so June cannot come soon enough.