Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening my delightful daffodils! Today we are going to dive into the theme of movie soundtracks.

There are some songs out there that are so synonymous with the movies they were licensed for that there is no way an image or a scene does not pop into your head. (If you have seen the movie of course) Being featured in a movie is a form of promotion that can be a great marriage between two mediums that result in a slingshot effect for an artist or bands career. The songs become timeless and this results in the movies even being included into modern pop culture for generations. This can be attributed to the introduction of streaming services the likes of Spotify and ITunes as well as Youtube.

Now, if we are going to dive into this topic why not start with probably one of the biggest there is.

The Rocky Franchise created by Sylvester Stallone contains 7 films including the most recent instalment “Creed”. While the classic trumpeting anthem of the Rocky movies can be recognized globally the 3rd instalment “Rocky III” can be credited with probably the greatest sports entrance songs there is; “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor.

So, in the beginning Stallone wanted to license “Another One Bites the Dust” by Queen however that fell through and thus Survivor was given the opportunity. “Eye of the Tiger” won a Grammy for “Best Rock Performance” and toped the billboard charts for six consecutive weeks.

Next we have a classic from “The Breakfast Club”

The song “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” recorded by the Scottish band Simple Minds was originally offered to big names such as Billy Idol. Funnily enough, along with Idol, Simple Minds had initially rejected the offer but were then persuaded to by their label. However, legend says that Simple Minds only took three hours of their time to rearrange and record the song and then promptly ignored it until it took the American audience by storm when “The Breakfast Club” became a massive hit. The song stayed at no.1 on the US Top Rock Tracks chart for three weeks and stayed on the UK’s chart though 1985 and 1987 even though the song only reached no.7.

Now it’s borderline impossible to not belt out the timeless ballad from one of the most successful films of all time “Titanic”.

As is the running theme it seems, Celine Dion initially did not want to record the song since she was fresh off recording the theme song for Beauty and the Beast. James Cameron also did not want to have a full vocal song to be featured in his movie however changed his mind after deciding that a hit song would benefit his movie in the long run. His decision was the correct one in the end since “My Heart Will Go On” won the 1997 Academy Award for best original song. The Grammy for record of the year was awarded to Dion in 1999 marking the first time in history for the award to be won by a Canadian. “My Heart Will Go On” has also been named one of the songs of the century, as it deserves to be.

The previous three songs mentioned are truly timeless classics however it doesn’t mean that modern songs cannot share the same claim to fame.

In my honest opinion, one of the catchiest songs ever written was released in 2013 as part of the “Despicable Me 2” soundtrack. “Happy” written, recorded and produced by Pharrell Williams has reached the top of a multitude of charts worldwide. The song was originally written for CeeLo Green however CeeLo’s label decided against it. Since “Happy” was so well received worldwide I believe that it is a great example of how a song can over shadow the movie that it was a soundtrack of.

Movies and music have forever been synonymous with each other with soundtrack albums being released alongside their visual counterpart. Which is why, I want to take a quick moment to bring up Guardian of the Galaxies soundtrack, or even Marvel soundtracks in general, because they have resulted in the introduction of older classic songs to a new generation of kids who would never have known they existed. While some the bands featured in Marvel movies such as ACDC in Iron Man don’t need the promotion per say, it is still beneficial to the longevity of their sound.

Having a song promoted through a movie release has worked in the past for artists in bands a like and is still consistently being used in modern days.

Some other great examples of Movie soundtracks are:

“I Believe I Can Fly” recorded by R. Kelly for the movie “Space Jam”

“Falling Slowly” by Glen Hansard and Mark√©ta Irglov√° for the movie “Once” and was awarded an Oscar for best original song.

“You’ve Got a Friend in Me” by Randy Newman for “Toy story”

“Lose Yourself” written and performed by Eminem for “8 Mile” for which he won a Best Song Oscar for.

“Ghostbusters” by Ray Parker Jr for, yeah you guess it, “Ghostbusters”


Stay tuned.


  1. Great post - another one that jumps out for me is The Psychadelic Furs and Pretty In Pink. oh, and Whitney Houston and The Bodyguard. I feel all nostalgic now...!

    1. Yes, Whitney Houston and The Bodyguard is another great example of this. Bonus points for the artist being a star in the movie as well!

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