When The CW's comedy-drama "Hart of Dixie" closes out its second season on Tuesday, May 7, it does it to the music of country trio Gloriana, including the Nashville-based band's hit single, "Can't Shake You."
Taping in March, the band takes the stage at Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, Calif., in front of a large crowd of extras, director and series star Tim Matheson, crew, guests, and even cast members who aren't in the scene. After the first take, with the band lip-syncing to a prerecorded live performance track -- Matheson explains that having a set track allows camera operators to time their shots -- the extras cheer long after "Cut" is yelled out.
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Season finale airs 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 7, on The CW
Taking a few minutes to chat in the set for Dr. Brick Breeland, Matheson's character, Gloriana member Tom Gossin explains the song choice. "I came in screaming 'Free Bird,'" he quips, "but they didn't want 'Free Bird.'"
"It's our current single, 'Can't Shake You,'" explains his brother, Mike. "We're on tour promoting it right now."
"'Dixie Chicken' might have been a good one," Tom adds. As to whether the band has ever done anything like this before, singer Rachel Reinert says, "It's like nothing we've ever done before. We've done music videos, but this is a whole other different kind of situation. At least for me, what I'm taking away from all of it is just the mad respect I have for what these people do, because every little bit counts.
"It's a lot of stop and start and doing it over and over and over again. They're amazing."
But when asked why Gloriana was chosen, Tom deadpans, "We can't figure that out, actually." Again, Mike chimes in with some information, saying, "We had some music on the show previously. We certainly feel lucky and blessed to be a part of it."
"I love this band," Matheson says. "I put some of their music with one of our major editors, in an earlier show. So I started listening to their music."
Reinert has been watching downloaded episodes of "Hart of Dixie" on the tour bus. The Gossin brothers are catching up, but Mike already has a favorite character, town bad boy Wade Kinsella, played by Wilson Bethel. "It's Wilson," Mike says. "What's his name on the show? Wade. That's Wade."
"I like it when he's shirtless," Reinert chimes in.
"There are a lot of shirtless pictures of him in the makeup trailer," says Mike. "I have a friend who knows him from somewhere, and I said, 'How am I going to know this guy, your friend?' And she said, 'He's the guy with his shirt off all the time.'
"It's like, first thing this morning, 'This must be him.' Now I feel horrible about myself. I want to go do some push-ups, sit-ups and then cry myself to sleep."
Until partway through the season, Wade was dating small-town BlueBell, Ala., doctor Zoe Hart (Rachel Bilson), but Wade's drunken philandering upended that. Meanwhile, BlueBell's endless game of romance roulette has seen other couples come together, split apart and wind up in new configurations. Lawyer George (Scott Porter) left Brick's daughter, Lemon (Jaime King), at the altar last season, and he's now moved on to Wade's ex-wife, Tansy (Mircea Monroe), despite still having feelings for Zoe. Meanwhile, town mayor -- and former NFL star -- Lavon (Cress Williams), has gotten over his affair with Lemon by first romancing businesswoman Ruby (Golden Brooks) and now Lemon's longtime friend, Annabeth (Kaitlyn Black). Lemon, despite a brief fling with a dentist, is on her own, and that suits King just fine.
"It's good to have something different than what we did last year," King says. "I like her straddling the line between being stuck in her old ways and trying to discover something new and having to become a strong, independent woman.
"So much of her life revolved around her happiness from her family or from a man, and it's great to show people and other women that you can find happiness through your own personal achievements and through discovering who you really are."
Lavon, though, is at the other end of the spectrum in terms of romantic partners. "I'm conquering everybody in BlueBell," Williams says.
He's enjoying the Lavon/Annabeth dynamic. "The Annabeth things makes a lot of sense to me," he says. "Honestly, me and Kaitlyn, we were hoping that we were going to go this route last year, at least coming into this year. She's so silly that she brings out a little bit of silly in Lavon."