Linda Ronstadt’s “Long Long Time” has soared up the streaming charts following last night’s episode of the HBO series “The Last of Us.”
After the episode aired, the 1970s song saw streaming numbers increase by 4900% according to Spotify.
“Long, Long Time” featured prominently and can be heard in scenes with survivors Bill (Nick Offerman) and Frank (Murray Bartlett), as well as later in scenes with Joel (Pedro Pascal) and Ellie (Bella Ramsey).
With Bill and Frank, the song is pivotal to their relationship. In the scene, Frank is sitting down at a piano and discovers a Linda Ronstadt songbook. Frank sits down at the piano and finds a book of her songs already there. He starts to play before Bill comes in to take over and sing the first few lines of the song, “Love will abide, take things in stride. Sounds like good advice but there’s no one at my side.”
The actual sync is played toward the end of the episode.
The song choice was made by executive producer and director Craig Mazin, but after his friend Seth Rudetsky suggested it. Mazin was looking for a song for the two characters to connect over.
Speaking with Variety, Mazin said, “I knew that song needed to hit certain things about longing and aching and endlessly unrequited love,” he said. “I could not find the right song for the life of me. I was trying and trying, and then I texted my friend Seth Rudetsky, who is the host of Sirius XM on Broadway and a savant. I told him, ‘Here’s all the things I need,’ and two seconds later: ‘Linda Ronstadt, “Long, Long Time.”’ I was like, there it is. That’s it!”
Written by Gary White, the song is featured on Ronstadt’s “Silk Purse” album. The single spent 12 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and peaked at No. 25. In 1971, Ronstadt earned a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Female Vocal Performance.
Watch the music video for “Long Long Time” below.