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Jul 12

Olympics Playlist: Songs of Champions

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I wonder what song is stuck in this swimmer’s head. (Image by sippakorn yamkasicorn, used under Creative Commons)

Last week’s opening ceremony, directed by filmmaker Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, Slumdog Millionaire), featured a playlist of British pop music– everything from the Clash, to Queen, to Adele. There were live performances from Paul McCartney, Arctic Monkeys, and other English icons. Keep the spirit of the Summer Games going with this Olympic-themed playlist. Listen up! You can hear the glory.

“The Distance” by Cake

A song about a literal race (“The green light flashes, the flags go up/ Churning and burning, they yearn for the cup”), as well as, you know, that inner competition (“No trophy, no flowers, no flashbulbs, no wine / He’s haunted by something he cannot define”). Whether you’re participating in your own backyard summer games, or just watching the ones in London from the couch, you’re sure to get pumped up with this ditty.

“Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” by Daft Punk

Get your electronic music fix and get motivated with this groovy tune. Lyrically simple, it gets straight to the spirit of Olympic training: “Work it harder/ Make it better/ Do it faster/ Make us stronger.” Chant that ten times fast. While swimming laps. Or vaulting over the horse.

“Work That” by Mary J. Blige

Sing it loud. This song, which is a declaration of self-pride and, will get you busting out your best dance moves and prepping for Olympic feats. “Workin’ with what I got, I gotta keep on/ Takin’ care of myself, I wanna live long,” says Mary J Blige. And who can’t get behind that?

“Fighter” by Christina Aguilera

Okay, Christina is singing this about an ex-lover (and how his mistreatment made her a stronger person), but really this is also a song you want playing as you cross the finish line. “Makes me that much stronger/ Makes me work a little bit harder.” Yeah, you’re a fighter.

“Unbreakable” by Bon Jovi

Bust out your air guitar and let this jock jam flow through your veins. “I’m unbreakable, unstoppable. I’m invincible. Come on bring it to me.” You’ll be ready as any Olympic athlete to go for the gold after listening to Bon Jovi.

Enjoy the rest of the Summer Olympics! Are there any other songs that you think channel the energy of awesome athletic competition? Share in the comments.

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