Olympics 2012: Examining the Opening Ceremony Playlist for London 2012

Liam Quinn@Quinn_LPContributor IIIJune 27, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 19:  Condensation is seen on the London Olympic logo outside the Olympic Stadium on March 19, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Julian Finney/Getty Images

With the London games just around the corner, the 86-song strong soundtrack for the Opening Ceremony has surfaced.

With that news, I tracked down the playlist on Spotify, cranked the laptop speakers all the way up to 2012 and jammed my way through the supposed musical representation of the Mother Land. 

Once the music stopped, a few observations from the songs that made the cut came to mind, as well as a handful of notable omissions.


The Rolling Stones – Satisfaction: Mick, Keith and Co. are clearly an automatic selection for any London-based celebration. But, given the context, perhaps I Can’t Get No, wasn’t the most apt choice, as the world’s best do battle for the ultimate satisfaction. Start Me Up surely was a better way to go. 

Prodigy – Firestarter: A somewhat surprising selection. I just hope the BBC has the broadcast cameras honed on Charles and Camilla as this synthetic punk classic blares around the arena. 

Kaiser Chiefs – I Predict a Riot: Too soon London, too soon… 

Ron Grainer - Doctor Who Theme: Hats off to the committee for an homage to British pop culture. Lets just hope the audience doesn’t get distracted in a heated debate over who was the better doctor; Matt Smith or David Tennant. 

The Beatles: She Loves You, Hey Jude and The End are all solid choices, but as with the Stones, surely better option out there. Seeing as it’s planned at a time when 205 nations are united in competition, Come Together seems like the logical choice. 

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 08:  A general view of the Olympics Stadium during the Visa London Disability Athletics Challenge LOCOG Test Event for the London 2012 Paralympic Games at Olympic Stadium on May 8, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Gett
Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Frankie Goes to Hollywood – Relax: Security will need to be on extra alert for this one, just in case Ben Stiller goes anywhere near the Malaysian Prime Minister. 

Sugababes – Push The Button: Although the band has only been around for 14 years, this is the fifth reincarnation of the groups members. Lets just hope they don’t change again before the games. 

Amy Winehouse – Valerie: A cunning choice, perhaps meant as a deterrent to athletes about the potential dangers of performance enhancing drugs. 

David Bowie: With Starman and Heroes already slated for a spin, Absolute Beginners is a somewhat strange choice. Given that it could parlay into a Bowie/Queen melody, Under Pressure could perhaps have been used here instead. 

Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody: While it’ll be interesting to see if the teams choreograph the Galileo, Galileo duet segment of the song, the inclusion into the list runs the risk of a younger TV audience thinking they tuned into a Wayne’s World re-run. And, taking into account their recent success in the Velodrome, it’s surprising that Bicycle Race wasn’t picked. And, although it’s cliché, surely We Are The Champions could’ve been squeezed in somewhere. 

Elton John – Bennie and the Jets: Incredibly, Sir Elton doesn’t get a mention anywhere on the playlist. There must be a spot for Elton in the ceremony somewhere, and no other song would resonate with the majority of the audience like Bennie and the Jets. 


What do you think of the list, and the suggested changes above? 

Share your opinion in the comments below.