2020s

Soundtracks of Cinema: ‘The Harder They Fall’

The Harder They Fall Soundtrack - Every Song in the Netflix Movie

The Harder They Fall soundtrack includes music by Kid Cudi, Jay-Z and Lauryn Hill. This info article contains spoilers for Jeymes Samuel’s 2021 Netflix movie. Visit the Vague Visages Soundtracks of Cinema section for more music guides.

Based on real historical figures, The Harder They Fall stars Jonathan Majors as Nat Love. He witnesses the murders of his parents as a child and subsequently seeks revenge against an outlaw named Rufus Buck (Idris Elba). The Netflix film breaks down the power dynamics amongst various male and female characters in two different Wild West crews. Musically, director Jeymes Samuel provides his own spin on previously-recorded tracks while enlisting music supervisor Michelle Silverman (Kill Bill: Vol. 1) to handle the placement of Western-themed needledrops. Here’s every featured song in The Harder They Fall, a film written by Boaz Yakin (Aviva) and the aforementioned Samuel.

The Harder They Fall Soundtrack: Every Song in the 2021 Netflix Movie

The Harder They Fall Soundtrack - Every Song in the Netflix Movie

  • “Three and Thirty Years” by Alice Smith and Fisk Jubilee Singers (00:01:00): Rufus arrives at Theodore’s door. The vocalization begins as the character pulls out two gold pistols. Rufus kills Theodore and his wife before carving a cross into the forehead of their son, Nat (Chase Dillon).
  • “Guns Go Bang” by Kid Cudi and Jay-Z (00:08:00): The Harder They Fall soundtrack music scores the title sequence. Nat leaves a church on horseback after killing a priest; an act of revenge. The song later scores a getaway sequence at 01:32:00 featuring Nat and Cuffee (Danielle Deadwyler).
  • “Upon My Return” by Cast (00:11:00): Bill Picket (Edi Gathegi) sings while men on horseback approach. He snipes one man before engaging in a shootout.
  • “Better Than Gold” by Barrington Levy (00:14:00): Nat arrives in Douglastown. He spots a saloon owned by Stagecoach Mary (Zazie Beetz). The music fades as Nat meets Cuffee.
  • “The Jim Crow Count” by Zazie Beetz (00:16:00): The Harder They Fall soundtrack song is performed by Stagecoach Mary. The music transitions to a romantic guitar tune as Nat reunites with his former flame.
  • “Here I Come (Jeymes Samuel Remix)” by Barrington Levy (00:25:00): A wide landscape shot captures a traveling gang. A CU visual shows Trudy Smith (Regina King) gazing across the land. The song picks up again at 00:36:00 after Rufus escapes.
  • “Promise Land” by Dennis Brown (00:41:00): Rufus saddles up in Redwood City. The townsfolk watch in fear as the roughriders make their way through. The music fades as Rufus and company meet with a banker.
  • “Do Unto Others” by Fisk Jubilee Singers (00:46:00): Wiley Escoe (Deon Cole) chats with Rufus. The music scores a fight sequence as the camera circles around the characters. Rufus knocks out the sheriff’s gold teeth and tells him to vacate Redwood City. The song can be heard again at 01:44:00 after Jim Beckwourth’s death.
  • “Away with the Wind She Goes” by Cast (01:02:00): The Harder They Fall soundtrack music scores an outdoors sequence. Nat sings to Mary, the latter of whom intends to return to Redwood City for a recon mission. The song can also be heard at 01:10:00.
  • “Black Woman” by Lauryn Hill (01:05:00): Mary arrives in Redwood City. The music plays for approximately 30 seconds. “Black Woman” also scores a sequence at 01:27:00 when Cuffee wears Mary’s clothing for a robbery at Maysville.
  • “Wednesday’s Child” by Alice Smith (01:07:00): Mary enters a night club. She makes her way to Rufus and offers to buy the establishment.
  • “Ain’t No Better Love” by Seal (01:44:00): The Harder They Fall soundtrack tune scores a shootout sequence. Trudy tells her team to kill Mary. The music fades before a combat scene. Meanwhile, Nat takes out attackers nearby.
  • “Blackskin Mile” by CeeLo Green (01:55:00): Cuffee squares off against Cherokee Bill (LaKeith Stanfield). She shoots him in the neck. Bill covers his wound and collapses in the street.
  • “Let’s Start (Live)” by Fela Aníkúlápó Kuti and Ginger Baker (01:46:00): Mary escapes from assassins and confronts Trudy. The two women drop their ammunition and engage in hand-to-hand combat.
  • “Three and Thirty Years (Opera)” by Pretty Yende (02:02:00): Rufus reveals his backstory to Nat. He explains that they are actually brothers. The music plays in the background as Nate takes his revenge.
  • “No Turning Around” by Jeymes Samuel (02:05:00): Nat closes the eyes of his dead brother, Rufus. He embraces Mary during a circular pan shot. The music fades as Nat looks at his fake grave.
  • “The Harder They Fall” by Koffee (02:09:00): The Harder They Fall soundtrack song plays over the final sequence. The surviving protagonists ride off as a figure in all black, presumably Trudy, watches from afar.
  • “We Go Hard” by Lauren Mvula and Mayra Andrade (02:12:00): The song plays during the end credits after “The Harder They Fall.”

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The Harder They Fall soundtrack also includes “King Kong Riddim Dub” by Jeymes Samuel.

Q.V. Hough (@QVHough) is Vague Visages’ founding editor.

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