Daisy Jones and the Six: A slice of ’70s and ’80s rock and roll

Riley Keough and Sam Claflin in Daisy Jones & The Six

Daisy Jones and the Six tells the history of a rock and roll band from its beginnings in the 1970s to its rise to the top in the 1980s. The band loosely resembles Fleetwood Mac and the sound is often eerily reminiscent of them.

Daisy Jones and the Six is structured like a documentary. Interviews with band members and people around them reconstruct the 20 year old story of the principal band members with all their problems and all their glory.

Riley Keough, Josh Whitehouse, Sam Claflin, Suki Waterhouse, Sebastian Chacon, and Will Harrison in Daisy Jones & The Six

The original band, created by the Dunne brothers, included 5 players. They were leader Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin), Karen (Suki Waterhouse), Graham Dunne (Will Harrison), Warren Rojas (Sebastian Chacon), and Eddie Roundtree (Josh Whitehouse). They thought it was clever to call their 5 person band The Six.

Riley Keough in Daisy Jones & The Six

Daisy Jones (Riley Keough) began as a solo act – a singer/songwriter. She sometimes performed with her best friend Simone Jackson (Nabiyah Be).

A music producer named Teddy (Tom Wright) put Daisy in front of The Six singing with Billy and there was magic in the sound. Everything about their songwriting, their performing, their personal relationship, was a battle. But they made great music together. They were both attracted to and repelled by each other.

Riley Keough, Josh Whitehouse, Sam Claflin, Suki Waterhouse, Sebastian Chacon, and Will Harrison in Daisy Jones & The Six

They started with nothing, playing small clubs. By the time they were finished they had huge album sales and were filling stadiums and gigantic venues with adoring fans. Timothy Olyphant played their manager.

Both Daisy and Billy had problems with drugs and alcohol. Throughout the series 10 episodes, we see them struggle with their addictions. Daisy almost died of an overdose. They would sober up, be clear, and then relapse.

Billy was married to Camila (Camila Morrone) and had a child. Their relationship was pretty strong, but Daisy was a constant problem for them.

Nabiyah Be in Daisy Jones & The Six

One of the best episodes in the series was about Simone. She took a bus to New York City to be with her girlfriend Bernie (Ayesha Harris). Simone’s story was counterpoint to the white rock band story. She became a huge disco star who operated in mostly queer Black spaces where she and Bernie could be open about their lives.

Riley Keough in a Daisy Jones & The Six poster wearing a flowing costume on stage
Remind you of anyone?

The music was good. Riley Keough is good, but she’s no Stevie Nicks. However the costumes, the tambourine, and the mannerisms Daisy used on stage were certainly meant to make you think of Stevie Nicks.

At the height of their fame, the band broke up. That happened in episode 10, which is where we learned who the documentary filmmaker interviewing everyone was. Episode 10 was my favorite episode, brilliantly directed by Nzingha Stewart. It included all the pain and anger and brokenness that led to the band’s breakup, but also the warmth and love that brought all the interviews together into a final, finished moment.

If you haven’t been watching Daisy Jones and the Six as Prime Video released it in chunks, you can binge the whole series now. It’s well written, based on the novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid. The only thing I missed from the novel was the description of Daisy’s raw, unschooled talent with music. It was all instinctive genius with her.

If you feel any nostalgia for the rock music of the 70s and 80s, this series will be a hit with you. I lived through that time and keep getting older day by day. Now my motto is, “I’ve given up sex, drugs, and rock and roll. Don’t make me give up coffee.” So grab a cup of coffee and sit down for a revisit with some sex, drugs, and rock and roll.

11 thoughts on “Daisy Jones and the Six: A slice of ’70s and ’80s rock and roll”

  1. I know this is an unpopular opinion – but I didn’t LOVE this show until the last 20 minutes of the last episode. I liked it..but didn’t love it until then. The book was so much better.. YIKES!

  2. Gwendolyn Lovett

    Happy to share that I enjoyed Daisy Jones & the 6. The series hit the right spots for me emotionally (raw and impactful), as well as thematically (rich and resonant).

    I never read the book, had no idea what to expect, and definitely went into this thinking, ‘How can it possibly take ten episodes to tell another sex, drugs and rock-n-roll story?’. I binge-watched the entire series after the finale aired, but I really didn’t start enjoying the show until episode 4. Episode 7, where the theme “creative expression for its own sake” was explored, is what made Daisy Jones & the 6 (for me) not just another rock scene spectacle. That episode had something to say about life, how we are living it, and said it in a way that spoke to my values. I always enjoy it when that happens.

    I thought Riley Keough and Sam Claflin did fine jobs: credible enough as singers, and certainly by episode 10 had built potent chemistry together. There was one point in that episode when I was actually startled by the connection I perceived between them. And no, my reaction was not because they were great singers, or anything of the sort. Just a momentary experience of how well they worked together, and I think, genuinely liked and respected each other as actors and as people. I really enjoyed that moment.

    In the final episode, the daughter as the documentary maker was a nice reveal. It was a good choice to write the final scene in a way that allows us to draw our own conclusions about Billy and Daisy’s future.

    Wrapping it up: I felt well-rewarded for having watched Daisy Jones & the 6. Definitely a different experience from the maddening frustration I felt after watching The Silent Twins and Mercy’s Girl. No irresistible compulsion to rant. Not this time. Hallelujah!

  3. I so value OldAintDead reviews and hate to, but need to leave this suggestion/comment.

    There’s a spoiler in Gwendolyn Lovett’s comment about who’s narrating the story. I was almost going to watch the series but now that story tension and reveal have been taken away. So I likely won’t watch now, as I was only half interested anyway. Would be great if commenters would follow this blogger’s lead and not reveal major elements of a story. The rest of us would like to enjoy the suspense too. And Ms. DeBolt, could you please warn us and/or block spoilers? Thanks for reading.

    1. I know some people can’t abide spoilers and I respect that. However, I cannot control what commenters say here. My only option is to refuse to publish a comment in its entirety, which I do sometimes if it’s hate filled or damaging. When I publish a review with spoilers, I warn you in the first paragraph about it. You’ve got me thinking about this now, and I’ll see if I can come up with same way to address it that doesn’t censor people.

      1. Gwendolyn Lovett

        Virginia, It was not my intent to “spoil” or be a spoiler of this show for anyone; that is something that I am sensitive to, not in the habit of doing, or can recall that I’ve ever done, frankly – here or elsewhere. Mistakes happen. I acknowledge the trespass.

        I apologize to you, as the owner of this blog, for the offense. Sorry that my Daisy Jones & the 6 comment now puts you in the position of monitoring comments, or makes you feel a need to make changes in any way.

      2. Please don’t feel guilty or bad about this. I personally don’t mind spoilers, although some people do. And sometimes the ending of a series is the main thing you want to talk about! I do love to hear what other people think about things I review, which is why I have the comments open.

        I don’t know what I’ll do about spoilers in comments, if anything. I’m thinking about it, but I haven’t had a brilliant idea for a solution yet.

      3. Gwendolyn Lovett

        Thanks for the response, the feedback.

        Honestly, my thoughts (feelings) about this specific situation, about spoilers generally, is that I *do not* read user comments about any show or movie I have not watched. I expect professional reviewers (blog sites) to be mindful of how much they reveal, but I don’t hold individual commenters to the same standard. I recognize there is a risk when reading comments, and consider it my responsibility to mitigate that risk (by waiting until it’s safe). Authentic expression is fundamental to being human. Not so sure about a fundamental right not to be exposed to spoilers, though :-).

        Not my intention to tell you how to run your site, but for readers adversely affected by spoilers, maybe you can add a line at the end of each blog post, “Be aware: though strongly discouraged, user comments may contain spoilers”. That way everyone is served, the responsibility remains where it belongs, and you don’t have to assume the role of monitoring individual comments. Just a thought.

        Of course, I respect whatever you decide. Be assured, I will not intentionally include spoilers in any future comments.

        Thanks for listening!

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