HomeMusicMusic: 'Original Songs' That Defined Their Movies | Disc 1

Music: ‘Original Songs’ That Defined Their Movies | Disc 1

Many moving parts go into the production of a movie. Hundreds of incredibly talented people come together and use their skills to put forth the best product that they can. In the end, if all comes together, these movies will give the viewer an incredible experience. An experience that brings us along for an emotional ride that also entertains. Below we will take a look at the ten best original songs from movies!

Production and acting aside there is also another huge factor that comes into play when making a movie, and that is the score. The music played during any movie can make or break its success. It sets the tone for every scene and can be used to take you emotionally where the director wants you to be.

The importance of music in the movies can be seen more clearly when looking at original songs. Some movies may use pre-existing songs but others have songs made up for the film. These original songs can be fantastic additions to the movie. They can establish the tone of the movie perfectly and going forward they can be just as popular as the movie itself.

Ghostbusters by Ray Parker Jr – Ghostbusters (1984)

Ghostbusters is one of the most successful comedies of all time. It was an incredibly entertaining movie that brought the public out to theatres in droves. With terrific acting, writing, and directing this movie is one that is close to perfect.

One of the best parts about the movie is the great original song created by Rey Parker Jr. Parker Jr created an incredibly entertaining song that captured the tone of the movie. The song, named after the movie, mirrored the comedic and dark tone of the movie perfectly.

What is also important is how successful this song became on its own. Outside of the movie the song “Ghostbusters” hit number one on the Billboard charts. It was also nominated for an Academy Award.

The fact that the song is just as famous as the movie says something about the impact that the song has had on the world.

Eye of the Tiger by Survivor – Rocky III (1982)

The Rocky series is one of the most well-known in the history of cinema. Following the life of World Champion Rocky Balboa, we get to see his journey from ham and egger to the top of the ladder.

The movie series is an incredibly popular one and apart from boxing is famous for some fantastic songs attached to it. Songs such as Going the Distance, Hearts on Fire, and Gonna Fly Now were some great songs and perfect additions to the Rocky family.

These songs were just the appetizer, however, when we look at the main course that is the greatest song from the Rocky series. “Eye of the Tiger”, by Survivor will always go down as the most famous song from Rocky.

Debuting in the third Rocky instalment “ Eye of the Tiger” is the song most identify with the franchise. The beat and lyrics capture the fighting spirit of Rocky more than any other and it will forever be linked to the movie series.

Shaft by Issac Hayes – Shaft (1971)

Everyone’s favourite private detective broke onto our screens in 1971. Shaft was the perfect blend of attitude, coolness, and intelligence. His demeanour was something that the audience could instantly identify with and made for a very entertaining watch.

Matched perfectly with the movie was the incredible original song, Shaft, by Issac Hayes. The funky beat and hilarious lyrics by Hayes were perfect and got us in the right mood to watch the film. It was a very catchy tune and one that the fans had no problem singing along with.

When Shaft hit the Billboard charts it skyrocketed up to number one by November.  It was one of the most popular songs in the country and was even awarded Best Original Songs at the Academy Awards.

To this day Shaft is still an instantly recognizable song. It has become the identifying trait of the movie and has maintained its presence in every sequel since.

Goldfinger by Shirley Bassey – Goldfinger (1964)

The James Bond franchise is one of the most recognizable in movie history. Starting in 1963, the franchise has continued until today, providing some great memories for the audience.

A major reason that the franchise has experienced this long-running success is the fantastic work done by various musical artists. The opening song for each James Bond movie has become one of its largest selling points and there are none better than the amazing Goldfinger, sung by Shirley Bassey.

Paired by composer, John Barry, Bassey created a truly memorable song. The combination of Bassey’s beautiful voice and the saxophone accompaniment was the greatest way to introduce Goldfinger to the world.

The fact that this song had maintained its popularity, in the Bond franchise, for nearly 60 years shows how great this song was. It has become as popular as the movie itself will continue to be the most memorable of James Bond openers.

Don’t You by Simple Minds – The Breakfast Club (1985)

During the 1980’s John Hughes hammered out classic after classic. His understanding of teen life was unparalleled and he used this to create some of the most popular movies of the decade.

This understanding of the teen condition was not just exclusive to his movies, but the songs that have been attached to it. None more evident than the most popular songs associated with his films, Don’t You, by Simple Minds.

Getting introduced to us via The Breakfast Club, Don’t You was the perfect soundtrack for the film. The lyrics captured the angst of the 5 teens and provided an excellent backdrop for their shenanigans.

Don’t You was the perfect match for Hughes’s film and it has become just as popular as the movie itself.  Nearly 40 years later it has become synonymous with the movie and hearing the song will always get an air fist pump from whoever hears it.

Mrs.Robinson by Simon and Garfunkel – The Graduate (1968)

Long before American Pie was around there was another movie that made itself on older women seducing younger men. In the late 1960s, Dustin Hoffman burst onto the silver screen as a high school graduate who was being hit on by the much older Mrs Robinson, played by Anne Bancroft.

While some of you younger readers may not remember this movie you cannot say the same for its original song. Created by Simon and Garfunkel, Mrs Robinson was a hilarious synopsis of the movie. Its upbeat tone was incredibly catchy and outside of a usually good performance from Hoffman, the best part of the movie.

While the Graduate has become less popular over the years the same cannot be said for Mrs Robinson. To this day hearing the opening chords of the song makes us instantly think of the movie and that is the power that Simon and Garfunkel’s MILF tribute has.

My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion – Titanic (1997)

Not many movies are divisive as James Cameron’s boat epic, Titanic. While shattering box office records upon release the movie has not aged well. It is too long and while visually stunning the story and character development leave little to be desired.

Even though Titanic has not aged very well, the same cannot be said for the song that helped to make it a butt load of money. “My Heart Will Go On”, sung beautifully by Celine Dion, was the perfect song to accompany the movie. It was an epic ballad that captured the scope of the story that was being told to us.

Selling over 18 million copies worldwide and hitting the top of the charts in 20 countries there is no denying the smash hit this song was. Its popularity is on par with the movie, with a strong argument that it has surpassed it.

Lose Yourself by Eminem – 8 Mile (2002)

At the dawn of the millennium, there was no bigger star in the world than Eminem.  Marshall Mathers hammered out smash hit after smash hit. His success was so great that he decided to try his hand at movie-making.

8 Mile was a decent success for the rapper. The movie itself was never going to be considered great, but the acting and story were adequate. What was great coming out of the movie was the superb original song s penned by none other than Eminem himself.

Lose Yourself was your usual brilliant Eminem song. During this time the man could do no wrong and this was no different.  The lyrics gave us a great glimpse into the life of young Rabbit. His struggles and successes are expertly worked into the song and bring us instantly into his world.

Lose Yourself was a smash hit upon release, winning an Oscar and staying at the top of the Billboard charts for 12 weeks. Because of this success, the movie 8 Mile will always be remembered for the original song s, Lose Yourself.

Stayin’ Alive by the BeeGees – Saturday Night Fever (1977)

In 1977, John Travolta strutted his way onto the silver screen. Landing the starring role in Saturday Night Fever brought Travolta into the public eye. Building off the commercial success of the movie Travolta became one of the biggest movie stars in the world with every role he landed was an instant money maker.

Travolta was not the only rousing success coming out of the movie as the hit single Stayin’ Alive, performed by the BeeGees, became an instant hit around the world. Mirroring the 70s disco craze Stayin’ Alive was the exact song needed for the movie. Its upbeat tone was the perfect song to dance to and the catchy lyrics were easy to sing along to as well.

Travolta may have been the big star coming out of the movie but there is no denying the long-lasting effect that its original songs have had. 44 years later and many might not remember the name of the movie but Stayin’ Alive will live on.

You’ve Got A Friend In Me by Randy Newman – Toy Story (1995)

Disney has always been a monster when it comes to animated features. Since 1937 they have been consistently hammering out classic animated movies that have become part of pop culture.

This dominance continued into the 90s with the smash hit Toy Story.  Toy Story was a fantastic movie and one that brought dump trucks full of cash driving up to Disney.

The endearing story of friendship is a large reason for the long-running success of the movie. It is shown in every scene of the movie and even goes as far as the fantastic original songs, You’ve Got A Friend In Me, by Randy Newman.

The incredibly relatable song tells a great story of friendship and how two people can always be there for one another.  It is a song that has maintained its presence in the 3 Toy Story sequels and has become the theme for the whole Toy Story narrative. 

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