Mafia III is set in New Bordeaux, a fictional New Orleans, in 1968. In his soundtrack, Jesse Harlin created a swampy, bluesy sound to give the setting its unique character. But, as he explains, it wasn't the first music he sent the devs at Hangar 13.
As the long-time composer for Lucas Arts, Jesse had plenty of opportunities to write big orchestral scores, but he said the music for Mafia III gave him a welcome chance to try something really different. In addition to working with amazing session musicians in Nashville, he found an ensemble of traditional step-dancers, and recorded their percussive sounds. Then a cellist brought in his instrument, built in the 1700s. As Jesse described it, "Older than America!" Blending all those unique sounds was an incredible, fun challenge.