The best bands to star in TV shows

From Doctor Who and Extras to New Girl and Game of Thrones, our favourite television shows are awash with musical guest stars it seems

The Doctor is getting a new musical companion in the shape of 25-year-old star Foxes.


The pop star, who won a Grammy for best dance recording with Zedd for their song Clarity, is set to appear in the upcoming eighth series and perform a brand new track.

She’s far from the first musician to take a trip in the Tardis – Kylie, Katherine Jenkins and McFly have starred on the sci-fi show before. And she’s far from the first to make a musical cameo on a TV show. Those music makers love appearing in our favourite TV shows…

Death Cab for Cutie – The OC

The OC was well known for its impressive soundtrack. Creator Josh Schwartz once said he wanted music to be a character on the show in itself. So it’s no surprise the town’s resident night club The Bait Shop welcomed more than a few famous faces, including Death Cab for Cutie (who were Seth Cohen’s favourite band in the hit show), The Killers and Modest Mouse.

Sheryl Crow – One Tree Hill 

The country and western star performed her hit song The Fist Cut Is The Deepest for high school lovers Nathan and Haley at Karen’s Cafe. Like The OC, One Tree Hill was never too far from a musical guest star. Others included Fall Out Boy, Jimmy Eat World, The Noisettes and Nick Lachey.

Lady Gaga – Gossip Girl 

Those elite Upper East-siders sure rubbed shoulders with the rich and famous. Blair, Chuck, Dan and co welcomed a number of famous faces to their parties, from fashion designers to real-life New York socialites, but they didn’t neglect pop royalty either. As well as Lady Gaga, who performed Bad Romance for the spoilt teens, Gossip Girl saw performances from Cyndi Lauper, who appeared at Blair’s birthday party, and Sonic Youth who provided the soundtrack to Lily and Rufus’ wedding.

David Bowie – Extras

David Bowie played up for the cameras in 2006, appearing on Ricky Gervais’ Extras and even improvising a comedy ditty. The clever scene sees Gervais’ character Andy meet his idol, only for him to write a song about how he is “a fat waste of space”…

Prince – New Girl 

New Girl star Zooey Deschanel teamed up with musical legend Prince in the latest series of the hit Fox comedy to sing funky new track Don’t You Wanna Fall in Love Tonight? Prince actually guest starred in the whole episode, giving Jess a makeover and playing a game of ping-pong before the pair performed at one of his mansion parties, while Nick, Schmidt, Winston, Coach and Cece danced in the background.

Sigur Ros – Game of Thrones 

Icelandic “post-rock” band Sigur Ros recently appeared in Game of Thrones. Not that you’d have noticed them if you didn’t know. The band, who are known for their ethereal sound, performed in the second episode of the current season, as a court band at The Purple Wedding – in true Westeros dress. Blink and you’ll miss their performance though. King Joffrey soon gets tired of their tune and throws coins at the band to send them on their way.

Stevie Nicks – American Horror Story 

Fleetwood Mac singer Stevie Nicks serenaded the witches of American Horror Story’s coven in a recent episode, performing Has Anyone Ever Written Anything About You? and Rhiannon. The cameo appearance came about because Misty Day (Lily Rabe’s character) is a dedicated fan of the star, who took the visit from the chart topper as an excuse to whip out some classic Nicks twirling.

Britney Spears – Sabrina the Teenage Witch

We are sure you’ll all agree this is a classic. Back in 1999, Spears starred in the first episode of season 4, Sabrina’s 18th birthday. As a present Sabrina’s dad magic-ed the pop star into their living room to cheer her up… and the singer ended up helping her make the right decision about where she should live. Brilliant stuff.

Status Quo – Coronation Street


Rock group Status Quo appeared in long-running soap Coronation street in 2005, when Les Battersby came face to face with his musical idols. The band then went on to play at the wedding of Les and his new wife Cilla. “Bruce [Jone, who played Les] is a fan of ours and he’s been to quite a few gigs. We basically asked him if we could have a cameo part, one thing led to another and here we are, trying to be actors,” said band member Francis Rossi at the time.