Olympics Opening Ceremony 2012: Musical Acts We'd Like to See
The rumors and speculations over who we will see perform Friday night at the Opening Ceremony in London have been flying around since Leona Lewis and Jimmy Page performed Whole Lotta Love to close out the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Who will be there for the 2012 Games?
In 2010 we were treated to the likes of Celine Dion, K.D. Lang, Joni Mitchell and Michael Buble. Vancouver was the Canadian artists time to shine. This summer the Games head to London, England where, presumably, we will be treated to an array of British musicians and singers.
Paul McCartney is already verified to be partaking in the events, but here are 10 more possibilities that we may see entertaining the world Friday night and throughout the ensuing weeks.
Since Mark Ronson is already in with Coca Cola for their Olympic campaign, I'm not sure if we will get to see him at the Opening Ceremony.
However, there would truly be no one better to orchestrate a real show for the audience. The producer, from St. John's Wood, England, has been very connected to the recently deceased Brit Amy Winehouse. That could be a tie in with doing one of her songs as a pseudo tribute.
Either way, Ronson's beats have been found all over the place lately. His style of producing gets the heart rate going and the adrenaline flowing. He would be great to have in a party atmosphere at the start of the ceremony.
If you are new to Mark Ronson's music, check out this song he did with Ghostface Killah.
At this point, Adele really needs no introduction. Her voice can be heard on countless radio stations worldwide.
Still, she calls Tottenham, North London, home which should be enough for her to get a nod to perform Friday night. Though her music won't be pumping up any athletes about to compete on the biggest stage in the world, she could lend her vocals to an anthem or a memorial segment perhaps, for those athletes lost in the past few years.
If you are new to Adele's music, and I don't know how you could be, but listen to her No. 1 hit "Rolling in the Deep."
It will be another 50 years before someone wears a fedora quite as magnificently as Elvis Costello. His music isn't half bad either.
Costello has been active since the 1970s when he first dropped "My Aim is True." He has followed that up with 30 studio albums and appeared on many crossover hits with various artists.
He hails from Paddington, England, and of course made this fantastic cameo in the spy comedy Austin Powers 2. His versatility is what makes him so appealing at the Olympics. He can lend instrumentation and backup vocals to almost any artist on the planet and do it while wearing that sweet hat.
If you are new to Elvis Costello's music, check out his rebellious classic '79 hit "Radio Radio," which at one time was banned from Saturday Night Live.
It has been speculated that with the 2012 Games, London is trying to take a turn towards pop culture. That means newer and lesser known artists.
Tinie Tempah is both of those. He also qualifies as Britain's best known hip-hop talent. At just 23 years old, the Plumstead, London, native can give a much younger and hipper vibe to the Opening Ceremonies. He will be able to draw in a much younger viewing audience, something that the higher-ups absolutely love.
Tempah is lyrically impressive and has won numerous awards, including Best International Act at the BET Awards in 2011. He is just bursting onto the scene right now, and the Olympics would be a great stage that could be mutually beneficial to the artist and the broadcast.
If you are unfamiliar with Tinie Tempah's music, check out this hit he performs with Wiz Khalifa called "Till I'm Gone."
Speaking of appealing to a younger audience, rapper K'naan just recently broke onto the popular music scene.
Does anyone remember why it was that he became so popular? It was during a sporting event just like the Olympics. The 2010 FIFA World Cup featured K'naan's "Wave Your Flag" as its anthem. It captured the spirit of the event so perfectly that I still use it before working out or shooting hoops. It is the perfect psych-up song.
K'naan is Somalian-Canadian, a great blend of nationalities that also holds true to the Olympics being a worldwide event, much like the World Cup.
If you are unfamiliar with K'naan's music, check out the "Wave Your Flag" song or his earlier hit "If Rap Gets Jealous."
While he doesn't exactly bring in the younger crowd, England can't deny its rich musical history, and what better way to do that then bring in Phil Collins.
The man is responsible for one of the all-time great stadium anthems, "In the Air Tonight." I can't imagine a better song to get me pumped up to watch the greatest athletes on the planet compete. Imagine the visual with hundreds of drummers nailing the breakdown at about 3:16 in the video!
Thanks to the film The Hangover, Collins' tune experienced a recent resurgence that only adds to its usefulness during the ceremony.
Collins is originally from Hounslow, Middlesex in England, and at 61 years old, he still has some left in the tank to give a great performance unlike some of the UK's even older legends.
If you are unfamiliar with Phil Collins' music, buy a ticket to a local sporting event and enjoy.
London Symphony Orchestra
The most obvious choice on this list is the London Symphony Orchestra, who will almost assuredly have a part in the Opening or Closing Ceremonies of the Olympics.
They have the ability to blend with any of a variety of solo performers and are the very definition of musical versatility. Known as one of the best groups in the world, they perform across the globe, and that helps with the Olympics' worldwide appeal.
If you are unfamiliar with the London Symphony Orchestra, check out their rendition of "The Final Countdown," admittedly more suited for the Closing Ceremonies.
A bit on the older side, but still one of the most unique performers in history, Elton John would make for a great performance at London's Opening Ceremonies.
Because of the length of his songs, I would hope to just hear a segment of one of his classics in a montage with all the other legendary English performers. The crowd always enjoys hearing a blast or two of Elton John; they make for great interlude songs when the music is changing genres or moods.
John is 65 years old but could still perform with his piano. He hails from Pinner, Middlesex in England and, as always, remains a favorite in his homeland.
If you are unfamiliar with Elton John's music, I'd have to recommend none other than "Tiny Dancer."
Mr. Hudson has experienced quite a rise in popularity recently thanks to the relationships he has formed with some of America's hip-hop heavyweights.
Most recently, the Birmingham native can be heard crooning the chorus on "Why I Love You," from Kanye West and Jay Z's collaboration album "Watch the Throne."
I don't need to tell you how huge that album was worldwide, but know that an appearance from these three would pop off the Olympic stadium. Mr. Hudson is a talented artist who has won numerous awards in the UK. He also has a new album which he is releasing this year.
If you are unfamiliar with Mr. Hudson's music, check out he and Jay Z's touching collaboration "Young Forever."
Finally we come to Ms. Leona Lewis, who closed out the last Summer Olympics in Beijing with Jimmy Page.
Thanks to her performance in 2008, it is almost assured that Lewis will be performing in some capacity at the 2012 Games.
In 2006, she won the third season of the UK's well known show The X Factor, created by Simon Cowell. From there, the Islington, London native has blown up, earning three Grammy nominations. She has also released two albums, with a third set to drop in October. An Olympic performance would certainly give that a boost.
Like Adele, her music isn't exactly meant for athletic performance, but she can also lend her beautiful voice to any anthems or duets.
If you are unfamiliar with Leona Lewis' music, check out her deep tune "Bleeding Love."