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Deal With The Devil / Music

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  • Lordi's song "Devil is a Loser" mocks someone for making a deal with the devil, because the devil is, well, a loser.
  • Blues singers Robert Johnson and Tommy Johnson (no relation) alledgedly sold their sold to the devil, according to legend.
  • Long before Robert Johnson, classical violinist Niccolo Paganini allegedly sold his soul for great musical talent.
  • Even Paganini is predated by Italian baroque composer Giuseppe Tartini. The story goes that in 1713, Satan himself appeared to Tartini in a dream and the two made a pact: Tartini would give his soul to Satan in exchange for some teachings. Tartini let the Devil borrow his violin, and he played a truly awe-inspiring song. When he awoke, Tartini tried to write down what he had heard, and created the Violin Sonata in G minor — or as it's more popularly known, the Devil's Trill Sonata.
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  • Igor Stravinsky's "The Soldier's Tale" is about a soldier who makes a deal with the devil and tries to outsmarten the devil, which fails.
  • Vocaloid's Madness of Duke Venomania has said duke (Gakupo) who in his childhood was mocked and taunted by others. In his adulthood, he made a deal with the devil to make him have irresistble charisma to women, having them flock to his mansion's basement to be his harem.
    • In Judgement of Corruption, a corrupt judge who receives bribes to make criminals "innocent" dies and meets with the "master of the hellish yard" who tells him he can be saved if he gives up his money. He refuses and is promptly sent to hell where the judge hopes to turn the place into a utopia after he gathers his sins.
    • In Dream-Eating Monochrome Baku, a girl who is having nightmares makes a deal with the titual character, Monochrome Baku the Dream-Eater, to take away them away in a deal made with a pinky promise. She summons him again to give her more dreams and seals the contract with a kiss and returns night after night to give her more. However, when the moon is full, the Dream-Eater's job is done and he collects his payment; never again will the girl be able to dream and has to face the harsh reality of the world that she keeps trying to escape.
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  • Both Eminem and Kanye West have compared becoming famous to making a deal with the devil, Shady on "Say Goodbye to Hollywood" and Kanye on "Eyes Closed" and GOOD Music's "2010 BET Cypher".
  • A Deal With The Devil was made by the bass player of the virtual band Gorillaz, Murdoc Niccals, but with no lethal consequence. He changed his middle name to Faust, and got Satan's bass guitar, El Diablo in return. (He was marked as a Satanist from the day he was born — his birthdate is 6 June 1966, which made his 40th birthday 06/06/06.) Turns out the devil came back to pick up his payment, but wasn't too particular about who he took to Hell, snatching guitarist Noodle in lieu of Murdoc. However, not even Beezelbub is allowed to jeopardize the fame and fortune the band brings to Murdoc, so he went down to Hell and tracked Noodle down and rescued her. It also doesn't hurt to mention that she's his Morality Pet. Except he didn't find her, and the current Noodle is actually an android. Then again, Murdoc has been drunk constantly for quite a while and keeps changing the story, so he's just a teeny bit of an Unreliable Narrator. If she was ever in Hell in the first place, the evidence suggests she Escaped from Hell on her own. Her location during her MIA period has not been confirmed, but real Noodle is alive and kicking, according to the "On Melancholy Hill" video. She and Russel are heading to Plastic Beach, and one assumes Murdoc isn't gonna enjoy the confrontation. There are suggestions on his Twitter page that he did try to find her; he seemed to panic when finding out she was alive and instantly rushed to help, so he may indeed have cared enough to try to find her last time.
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  • The Trans-Siberian Orchestra Rock Opera Beethoven's Last Night is based on a variation/inversion of this trope, as Mephistopheles offers to return a dying Ludwig van Beethoven's soul — in exchange for which, all of Beethoven's works would be forever erased from history, and his name would never be known to future generations. The soul wasn't Mephistopheles' to begin with...
  • In Jerry Springer: The Opera, angels try to rescue Jerry from Hell, but the demons fight them off, shouting "He made a choice!"
  • The Devil Went Down to Georgia (as mentioned in the Video Games entry for Guitar Hero III). The song could be considered an inversion of the trope as the "main character" (or as far as a song can have one) actually comes off better after a deal with the Devil and wins a Golden Fiddle in a fiddle contest.
    • And that the Devil challenged him, because he was the one in need. (He was behind schedule.)
      • Marc O'Connor hooked up with Charlie Daniels to record a sequel, "The Devil Comes Back to Georgia" in which the Devil challenges Johnny to a rematch. The track featured vocals by Travis Tritt (as the Devil), Marty Stuart (as Johnny) and Johnny Cash (narrating in full preacher-mode). Final score=?
      • Word of God is that Charlie Daniels agreed to record the song only if Johnny was able to beat the Devil once again. While the song's lyrics are fairly nebulous regarding the final outcome, the video indicates that Johnny won again.
    • And also Beelzeboss by Tenacious D, the song in earlier mentioned Tenacious D movie, which is arguably a parody of The Devil went Down To Georgia. Unlike the original, where the Devil is sporting about it and admits defeat, the devil in this song declares himself the winner anyway.
    • Until the Guitar Hero version, which was so ridiculously Nintendo Hard that the Devil winds up winning most of the time. It actually upset Charlie Daniels because it undermined the message of the song.
  • This is the theme of Weber's opera Der Freischütz, in which the Devil supplies magic bullets. It was later adapted by Tom Waits into a rock opera, The Black Rider:
    Why be a fool when you can chase away
    Your blind and your gloom
    I have blessed each one of these bullets
    And they shine just like a spoon
    To have sixty silver wishes
    Is a small price to pay
    They'll be your private little fishes
    And they'll never swim away
  • Rapper DMX has the Damien series: a series of songs spanning multiple albums about his Deal With The Devil to get into the hip hop industry, and the increasing demands of the devil for DMX to meet his end of the bargain.
  • Snoop Dogg's "Murder Was Tha Case" opens with him being shot and dying in the hospital, only to make a deal with a rhyming devil to get his hood rich lifestyle back. Naturally, he's then arrested and ends the song in prison.
  • Kamelot's albums, Epica and The Black Halo are two halves of a Rock Opera based on Goethe's Faust.
  • "Red Right Hand" from Let Love In, by Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, is about this.
    You don't have no money, he'll get you some
    You don't have no car, he'll get you one
    You don't have no self-respect, you feel like an insect
    Well, don't you worry, buddy, 'cause here he comes...
  • Subverted by Frank Zappa in his song "Titties and Beer" from Zappa in New York and Läther, about a biker who calls the devil's bluff. Apparently, you're not supposed to want to sell your soul.
  • The Canadian band Great Big Sea did this according to their song Straight to Hell. Strangely enough, both sides get exactly what they want: A life of Rock and Roll in exchange for One Eternal Soul. The chorus:
    Love me now while we're alive
    It's the best thing we can do
    We'll have no time up on Cloud Nine
    So Heaven on Earth will have to do
    I can sing like a bird
    And dance like a demon
    And I do it all so well
    Cause I made a deal with the Devil
    And when I die
    I'm going straight to hell.
  • The song Demolition Lovers off of I Brought You My Bullets... and most of the album Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge by My Chemical Romance were supposed to operate on a story line that a somewhat nefarious pair of lovers are killed in a hail of bullets. The man gets to Hell, finds out the woman is still alive, and then makes a deal with the devil — he'll kill 1000 evil men in order to get his life back and be with his woman. However, the band is a fail at sticking to story lines when they decide to make a concept album, so you just have to trust them on this.
  • Disturbed's Inside the Fire has the devil attempting to get the singer to give his soul to the devil (kill himself) so he can see his girlfriend (who killed herself) again. Draiman turns the deal down.
  • Party of the First Part is a song/spoken word piece by Bauhaus, where a rather dim woman gets conned out of her soul by a hilariously obvious demon (it says "Beelzebub" on his business card, for pity's sake) in return for short-lived musical fame.
  • Orpheus makes one with Hades in the folk opera Hadestown
  • Subverted in Sound Horizon's Seisen no Iberia, where Layla's literal Deal With The Devil ends up being the smartest decision anyone's made in centuries, what with creating a peaceful resolution to eponymous Forever War.
  • The premise of the video for Ultravox's Hymn. It features an actor, a struggling politician, a club singer and a waiter being offered contracts by a tall, slick, green-eyed man who is heavily implied to be the devil. They all take him up on his offer and enjoy success, until he calls in his "favours". It ends with him tying up the singer and a contract burning.
  • A popular urban legend theorizes that the members of Led Zeppelin sold their souls to Satan in exchange for fame and fortune, and John Paul Jones was the only member of the band who refused. This is why John Paul Jones is the least-known member of the band, but he's also the only one who hasn't suffered some horrible tragedy in his personal life.
  • Skyclad plays with the trope. The song "A Great Blow for a Day Job" starts with the "main character" selling his soul for fifty years of wealth, fame, health and good fiddling skills. Unlike "The Devil Went down to Georgia", it doesn't ends up with the "beating the devil" thing... except that the main character really doesn't seems to give a damn about spending eternity in Hell because turns out he lived a REALLY good life.
  • The Mick Ryan song The Widow's Promise, alternatively called The Widow or The Widow and the Devil, has a humorous twist where a lonely widow offers her soul in exchange for the Horny Devil satisfying her in bed. The widow proves literally insatiable, and the Devil ends up giving up in exhaustion. Then he finds out to his horror that there's nothing stopping her from trying the deal again the next night, and flatly refuses to show up.
  • "Friend of the Devil" by The Grateful Dead from American Beauty, where a man escapes from jail with help from the Devil, but ends up chasing him in the end.
  • Kris Kristofferson's "To Beat The Devil" has him meet up with old Nick in a bar and being shown how to write a hit song in exchange for accepting that his music will never matter. He ends up rewriting the Devil's song to fit his own ideas.
    I ain't sayin' I beat the devil
    But I drank his beer for nothin'
    ...and then I stole his song!
  • In the song "Hooker with a penis” by Tool when confronted about selling out, the protagonist of the song mentions that he was sold out for a long time.
    "All you know about me is what I sold you, dumb fuck. I sold out before you ever even heard my name, I sold my soul to make a record dipshit, THEN YOU BOUGHT ONE!
  • The music video for the song Nameless World by Skip The Use shows a man driving to a place specified in his record contract with a Mr. Behemoth. On his way there, he's hit by a truck driven by a man that looks like the devil...and in that moment the man realizes what exactly his record contract was.
  • The song "Devil Came with a Smile" by A Pale Horse Named Death is about a rockstar who wants the Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll lifestyle. It doesn't last long, of course.
  • The Lab Rats' Devil's Train, near the end the protagonist of the song is met by The Devil/demon/Humanoid Abomination who suckers the protagonist into a deal.
    Ooh easy with the tongue son, try to listen carefully/
    What you seen's scary but nothing when compared to me/
    I could show you things that paint all your dreams haunted/
    I could make you scream if I wanted/
    Two peas in a pod flocking like birds of a feather/
    And you never have a need to beg work or steal/
    If all this sounds worth it then lets make a deal/
    All you want in life for price of your soul/
    All the money you can fold, power that you can hold/
    I'll put you in control, only if you're down to roll down these/
    train tracks tonight.
  • Attempted by the narrator of KONGOS' "Come With Me Now". It doesn't work; the narrator is already a roiling mess of sins, so presumably Old Scratch doesn't see much point in putting in the hard yards for something he's already getting.
    I tried to sell my soul last night/Funny, he wouldn't even take a bite...
  • The Pretty Reckless' "Take Me Down" is about Taylor Momsen doing this in exchange for a musical career.
  • The music video for Phantom by Nathan Sharp follows a young magician who makes a deal to put on the perfect magic act.

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