Sinister 2 star Shannyn Sossamon likes to put together playlists for the character she plays, but she's not exactly willing to share them with the general public. In the movie, which opens Aug. 21, Sossamon plays Courtney Collins, a mother on the lam from her abusive husband whose two sons are haunted by that pied piper of possessed children, the demon Bughuul. "I do have a playlist for Courtney," says Sossamon, who is also the mother of two boys, Audio, 12, and Mortimer, 3, but she tells Billboard, "I'd feel more comfortable keeping it private. It's got a lot of Butt Rock on it."
Since there's more than one meaning out there for Butt Rock, Sossamon, 36, defines it as music she heard when she was young "that made me feel really uncomfortable because the adults around me loved it so much and thought they were so cool listening to these songs and drinking beer."
Asked for examples, Sossamon consulted her Sinister 2 playlist and revealed that Scorpions' "Rock You Like A Hurricane" and Don Henley's "Boys of Summer" were, along with "a lot of those hits from the '80s" on the playlist. But instead of pulling back the curtain entirely on her method of character preparation, the actor, who also stars in the Twin Peaks-esque Fox TV series Wayward Pines (based on Blake Crouch's series of novels) and was briefly the drummer for the indie girl group Warpaint during the recording of its debut EP Exquisite Corpse (her sister Jenny Lee Lindberg is the band's bassist), instead created an exclusive playlist for Billboard. "I went with my instincts in that moment," Sossamon says of her song choices, which follow. "You can overthink playlists, so I did this one really quickly," she explains, adding: "These are some of my favorite songs that either I've been listening to lately or that I will always love. They move me in an interesting way."
Based on her list, Sossamon loves passionate, unpredictable music, and she likes to dance.
"The Bed is Too Big Without You" - The Police
"I love the intro to this song. It kind of fades in and the groove and the way Sting sings it are just great."
"Atliens" - OutKast
"I've been a huge fan of OutKast since I can remember, and I never seem to get sick of this song. I listen to it with my boys in the car all the time, and they're sick of it, I think. But I really, really love OutKast."
"So Lee" - Stina Nordenstam
"This song has a really abrupt great intro that I love and, again, a nice groove. Stina Nordenstam is from Sweden. An old boyfriend introduced me to her and I've loved her ever since."
"Shades of Cool" - Lana Del Rey
"I hadn't heard Lana Del Rey, really, until Ultraviolence crossed my path. It's very good, but this song in particular is great."
"Boom Boom" - The Animals
"This one's that's always fun to dance to."
"When I Saw You" - The Ronettes
"It's romantic and passionate but with a great bounce."
"Millennium" - OutKast
"This one feels fiery and fierce without losing the beat. These guys are special."
"Love Letters" - Kenny Lester
"This is on the soundtrack for David Lynch's Blue Velvet. What I love about the song is that it's got soul and groove and a kind of nutty passion."
"Hang On Sloopy" - The McCoys
"This is one of my favorite songs, and its also one of my sons' favorite songs -- at three years old and 12 they both love it.
"No Way Out (Redux)" - Warpaint
"I guess I could have chosen a song from the Exquisite Corpse EP because those songs are really special. "Beetles" and "Elephants" and "Burgundy" are some of my favorite songs. But "No Way Out" is one of their best. The beat's good, the lyrics are really good, and it's got a nice journey. I'm always rooting for them, for sure, but it's definitely a tricky band. I mean we started it together, and it was always magical musically. But it wasn't always healthy, and I just wanted to have a healthy life and a simpler life -- and focus on the first calling that came to me: acting.
"Song to the Siren" - Cocteau Twins
"I just discovered this one a little while ago. It's a Tim Buckley cover that was used in another David Lynch movie, Lost Highway, but I fell in love with watching [Cocteau Twins lead singer Elisabeth Fraser] sing it live. I put it last because it's amazing."