Music Monday: Eye of the Tiger – Then and Now

It seems like I’m stuck in a series of Philly-based blog posts, with some recent posts focused on Wawa and the dangerous Roosevalt Boulevard.

So perhaps it’s no surprise that this week’s Music Monday has a Philly connection.

The song is Eye of the Tiger, which was the theme song for the film Rocky III (the one where Rocky fought Mr. T).

According to Wikipedia, the song topped charts worldwide during 1982. In the United States, it held No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for six consecutive weeks and was the No. 2 single of 1982, behind Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical”. It spent fifteen consecutive weeks in the top ten, the second-longest run of 1982, behind “Hurts So Good” by John Mellencamp This top ten run is tied with the aforementioned “Another One Bites the Dust” as well as “Physical” as the longest run in the top ten for a number one song during the entire 1980s decade. The band won an award for “Best Rock Performance by Duo or Group with Vocal” at the 25th Annual Grammy Awards. In September 1982, it also peaked at No. 1 in the United Kingdom, remaining at the top of the UK Singles Chart for four consecutive weeks.

Here’s the video:

But the real reason the song came to my attention was because a couple of days ago I received an alert that  Walk Off the Earth had just recorded its own version of the song.

Like many other WP bloggers, I am a big fan of WOTE, so I knew even before I watched it that it was probably going to be great. But I’m biased, so don’t take my word for it. Here’s what Jim Peterik, a co-writer of the original song, has to say about WOTE’s cover:

I must have heard upwards of 1000 covers of “Eye of the Tiger” since it came out by Survivor. When I wrote it with Frankie I did not predict the longevity of this anthem and the amount of various versions (including Weird Al Yankovic’s great parody “Rye Or the Kaiser” — “Do you want your corned beef on the rye or the Kaiser?” Lol! I just watched a version that turned my head around and opened my eyes and ears. Performed by a band called Walk Off the Earth. This young conglomerate totally reinvents the song to a kind of island/reggae pop. And it works!! It never sounds corny or inappropriate. And it totally cooks. The genuine joy on your faces really comes through in the groove and the music. Congrats guys and doll for an awesome job.

Can a cover version get any higher praise than that?

So without further ado, here is WOTE performing Eye of the Tiger:

37 thoughts on “Music Monday: Eye of the Tiger – Then and Now

  1. I like WOTE, but this one doesn’t work for me. It sounds more WOKE than WOTE. It’s pathetically wimpy. When I hear this song, I want powerful instruments, growling voices, and an adrenaline-pumping tempo. This is more like Eye of the Kitten for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. it is quite different from the original, but I do like their take on it. But I also prefer the original. I can’t imagine listening to WOTE’s version while watching all of those fight scenes…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m a bit surprised that WOTE just released their version of this song. It seems that they usually choose more current songs. Their versions always seem to offer something unique, and I look forward to seeing what props they make use of. I prefer the original in this instance, but that is not often the case with most WOTE covers.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Well, I don’t know if you can get any higher praise than that of the song’s writer. I understand that some readers are attached to the Rock Power Anthem of the original, but I think this cover is phenomenal. I especially enjoyed the acoustic breaks and the harmonies on the final chorus were delicious. I am glad you shared this and I am now officially a big fan of W.O.T.E.!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. No surprise that you chose this, or that I’ve already watched it several times! They’ve done the best kind of cover: they’ve made the song their own, as the writer commented in giving them high praise. Tbh I’ve always thought the original was a bit overdone anyway 😊

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It appeared in my YouTube recommendations as soon as it was released – one of the advantages of subscribing to their channel. I was never a fan of Stallone or the movie, and the original version of the song just got boring after hearing it for the millionth time!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. The first was tolerable, I guess, but by the time they were at episode 97 I think they’d overdone it.

        Subscribing is the best way of not missing anything, I do it for many artists as YouTube are good at including them in their recommendations.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I agree that sometimes they push things too far with the sequels. But I did like the new twist hey added with the Creed movies.

        and yes, I have a few YouTube subscriptions, which do come in handy…

        Liked by 1 person

      4. the movies feature the son of Apollo Creed. he wants to get into boxin, and Rocky becomes his trainer. Creed is played by Michael B Jordan, who seems to be great in every movie he is in…

        Liked by 1 person

  5. the original became a power anthem, that makes me smile every time I hear the first few bars. like you, I’m a fan of wote, and love their lighter, happier, trill-ier version of the song too, a very different feel, but nice in its own right

    Liked by 1 person

    1. WOTE as so many great videos, and they just seem to have so much fun in all their videos. They have one video that is a compilation of several Beatles songs which I thought was wonderful. But that’s jsut the tip of the WOTE iceberg 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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