You can shake me up or I can break you down
There are over thirty-five different pop songs peppered throughout Goodfellas, and only twelve of those songs made it onto the movie’s official soundtrack. From Tony Bennett to Sid Vicious, Scorsese’s use of popular songs in the film is astounding — most of it is sourced in the scene itself, these songs reflect the taste of the characters (Paulie and the old guard stick to the Italian crooners; Henry listens to The Rolling Stones and Cream), the character of the setting, and the progression of time.
It’s a Romantic collection of songs, matching the dewey-eyed sentiment that Henry’s narration has towards the made life. Strung together, you can practically hear Henry Hill’s life unfold without seeing a frame.