The Oral History of 'Grey's Anatomy's Infamous Musical Episode

Simon Says: Special Shondaland Edition.

Hi, all! Coming at you with a special edition of Simon Says because today, I published a story I’ve been working on for ages: the oral history of Grey’s Anatomy’s musical episode.

As you all know, I’m a *big* Grey’s fan, and so when I realized a few months back that the 10th anniversary of “Song Beneath the Song” was coming up, I knew I needed to write about the episode. After all, it’s one of Grey’s most iconic (and infamous) hours, featuring everything from elaborate dances to floaty dream sequences to Kevin McKidd’s Owen shout-singing “Calm Down” in a moment that’s become a beloved TikTok meme.

For the story (on Shondaland now), I spoke to series creator Shonda Rhimes, the episode’s writers Tony Phelan and Joan Rater, and cast members including Jessica Capshaw, Eric Dane, and Chandra Wilson to get their thoughts on the hour’s making and legacy. It was a super fun piece to write, and I’m so excited it’s finally live.

Fellow Grey’s fans, please read and share! A few of my favorite excerpts are below:

Shonda Rhimes on pitching the ep to ABC—and being told no (!):

Sandra Oh’s reaction to being asked to sing in the episode:

Kevin McKidd on Owen’s incredible “Calm down!” moment:

And Eric Dane’s genius secret to getting through so many Grey’s surgery scenes over the years:

If you have fond (or not so fond) memories of the Grey’s ep, let me know—I’d love to hear your thoughts. Happy reading!