Song of the Day #384: ‘Eye of the Tiger’ – Survivor

survivor20 Best Songs of the 80s – #18

1982 brought Rocky III, at the time just about the best movie ever. I remember the thrill of hearing the Rocky theme music kicking in over the United Artists logo as I sat in the 167th Street theater in North Miami.

Rocky III had Mr. T as Clubber Lang and Hulk Hogan as Thunderlips. It had the death of Mickey and the evolution of Apollo Creed from enemy to friend and trainer. It had that great Talia Shire motivational speech (“not for money or me”) followed by the training montage to end all training montages.

And of course it had ‘Eye of the Tiger,’ the Survivor song written for the film that became a breakthrough radio hit as well. ‘Eye of the Tiger’ was nominated for an Oscar but lost to the theme from An Officer and a Gentleman, ‘Up Where We Belong.’ When’s the last time you found yourself humming that song??

Survivor didn’t really do anything else of note but I bet they’re still living comfortably off the royalties from this song. After all, it is prominently featured in both Guitar Hero and the American Idol karaoke game. Good to know the kids today can appreciate it. I just hope they also learn to appreciate Rocky III.

Risin’ up, back on the street
Did my time, took my chances
Went the distance, now I’m back on my feet
Just a man and his will to survive

So many times, it happens too fast
You change your passion for glory
Don’t lose your grip on the dreams of the past
You must fight just to keep them alive

It’s the eye of the tiger, it’s the thrill of the fight
Risin’ up to the challenge of our rival
And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night
And he’s watchin’ us all in the eye of the tiger

Face to face, out in the heat
Hangin’ tough, stayin’ hungry
They stack the odds ’til we take to the street
For we kill with the skill to survive

Risin’ up, straight to the top
Have the guts, got the glory
Went the distance, now I’m not gonna stop
Just a man and his will to survive

The eye of the tiger…


2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #384: ‘Eye of the Tiger’ – Survivor

  1. Amy says:

    🙂 This one brings me back. You perfectly capture the experience of watching this film for the first time. Any song associated with the comeback of our beloved Rocky would have to be remembered fondly, but I happen to think this is a rocking good song. Didn’t Frankie Stallone do some of the music for one of his brother’s films? I have this thought that he did, but I’m guessing his offering/s didn’t get nominated for an Academy Award. (still, don’t knock “Up Where You Belong” – I’ve been humming it internally since I read that sentence in your entry ;P)

  2. Dana says:

    Frank Stallone did write some songs for the Rocky movies, but his big hit was “Far From Over” from that god awful Satuday Night Fever sequel Stayin’ Alive.

    It’s hard to find a catchier hook than you find in Eye of the Tiger. Hell, it even makes me want to run up those steps in Philly ala Rocky!. Another great 80’s lick!

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