For this “Things That Bring Back Memories” post, I am going to pick something pertaining to the topic of “Music“. There are so many songs that I can remember from years ago, and since music is a huge part of our family, the memories come streaming back when you hear a certain song.
Do you ever have that tune that comes on the radio, and you can just automatically remember where you were, who you were with and what you were doing? It amazes me, how as I get older, I can’t remember things from last week – but have that certain song come on the radio on a “Flashback” day, and “BOOM”, I am back in the place I was when I heard it. Don’t know if it’s the side effects of my brain surgery, which they said might affect certain memory, but I’m so glad that I can remember some things of the “good old days.”
So to get on with this “Things That Brings Back Memories” blog post for this week, I’m going to pick “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor, which was released on May 29, 1982. This song is one that I think everyone seems to know. If not from the original release, it’s from a very well-known movie…do you know what it was? …… Good answer!!
The song “Eye of the Tiger” is one that I always kind of use for my personal theme song. I’m a tiger lover, so anything about these beautiful animals, I’m in. Who knows, maybe because I used to listen to this song so often when I was younger, that’s how I got to be so attached to those furry animals!! ha/ha
I remember years ago seeing these guys in person in some small little bar called “Crossroads” (then became Angel’s Roadhouse – now torn down) in Yucaipa, CA area with a friend of mine. Of course they started with some of their old songs and did a pretty good job. Near the end, the lead singer asked if anyone had any requests, of course, the whole place yelled “Eye of the Tiger”! Well, they went on singing a different one and later, asked again. Once again, they got that response. Mr. Lead Singer Man was not very happy and had a horrible attitude, but finally gave in and sang our favorite song. After that, a lot of people even left because of how he treated everyone. Oh well, maybe he was having a bad day, or sick of playing that song, but come on man – what do you think you’re most known for??
All in all, this is still one of my favorites…always one to rock out to, and one that many even have as a ringtone!! 🙂
So, is there a song that brings back great memories for you? Leave a comment below, and let me know.
More Info on the Song:
“Eye of the Tiger” is a song by American rock band Survivor. It was released in the spring of 1982 as a single from their third album Eye of the Tiger. It was written at the request of actor Sylvester Stallone, who was unable to get permission for Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust”. The song was to be the theme song for the movie Rocky III, in which Stallone was playing the main role. The movie version of the song is different from the album version because it was the demo version, and it also features tiger growls.
It gained tremendous MTV and radio airplay and topped charts worldwide during 1982. In the United States, it held number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for six consecutive weeks and was the No. 2 single of 1982, behind Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical”. It is memorable for its guitar riff and anthemic chorus.
This song is also the title song to the movie of the same name.
It was certified platinum in August 1982 by the RIAA, signifying sales of 2 million vinyl copies. The song had sold over 3.8 million in digital downloads in the United States alone by February 2014. It was voted VH1’s 63rd greatest hard rock song. Combined sales of original vinyl release and digital downloads total over 9 million copies, making “Eye of the Tiger” one of the best-selling singles of all time.
In an interview with Songfacts, co-writer Jim Peterik, who shared writing credit with Frankie Sullivan, explained the song’s title: “At first, we wondered if calling it ‘Eye of the Tiger’ was too obvious. The initial draft of the song, we started with ‘It’s the eye of the tiger, it’s the thrill of the fight, rising up to the spirit of our rival, and the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night, and it all comes down to survival.’ We were going to call the song ‘Survival’. In the rhyme scheme, you can tell we had set up ‘rival’ to rhyme with ‘survival’. At the end of the day, we said, ‘Are we nuts?’ That hook is so strong, and ‘rival’ doesn’t have to be a perfect rhyme with the word ‘tiger’. We made the right choice and went with ‘Eye of the Tiger’.”
More Info on the Band:
Survivor is an American rock band formed in Chicago in 1978 by Jim Peterik. The band achieved its greatest success in the 1980s with its arena rock sound, which garnered many charting singles, especially in the United States. The band is best known for its double platinum-certified 1982 hit “Eye of the Tiger,” the theme song for the motion picture Rocky III (US number 1 for 6 weeks). Singles like “Burning Heart” (US number 2), “The Search Is Over” (US number 4), “High on You” (US number 8), “Is This Love” (US number 9) and “I Can’t Hold Back” (US number 13) continued to chart in the mid-1980s.
The band tweaked its musical direction in 1988 with the release of the slightly heavier Too Hot to Sleep, but due to lackluster promotion the album barely reached the Billboard 200 in the United States. Because of this and tension between founding members, the band split.
Singer Jimi Jamison later toured as “Survivor” in the mid-1990s without the permission of the rest of the band, but reunited with Sullivan in 2000. The band then released “Reach” in 2006, but Jamison left again after its release and was replaced by singer Robin McAuley. Survivor continued to tour with McAuley into 2011 until Jamison returned later that year.
An announcement on November 13, 2011 by McAuley on his Facebook page revealed that he had left Survivor. A subsequent announcement on November 18, 2011 confirmed that Jamison had rejoined the band and a tour was to take place in 2012.
In April 2013 it was announced by the band’s official media sources that guitarist Frankie Sullivan had reunited the current Survivor line-up with original singer Dave Bickler, with the band now having their two most popular vocalists together for the next tour, Bickler and Jamison.
On September 1, 2014 Jamison died of what was believed to be a heart attack in his home in Memphis, TN. at the age of 63. His autopsy released on November 11, 2014 revealed the actual cause of death to be a hemorrhagic brain stroke, with “acute methamphetamine intoxication contributing.”
Some Other Interesting Facts:
- The first two Rocky movies used a very popular orchestral theme written by Bill Conti. That song, “Gonna Fly Now,” was a #1 hit in 1977. Says Peterik: “We didn’t want to do anything like that. Stallone, in his first conversation to us, he made it real clear he wanted to distance himself from that first song. To him, it was great, but he wanted something to get to the youth market, the cutting edge. Looking back at age 53, it’s hilarious to think I was once part of the cutting edge. We attempted to steer clear of the ‘Gonna Fly Now’ thing.”
- Jim Peterik told us regarding the origin of this song: “When we got the initial rough cut of the movie, the scene that ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ appears in was cut to ‘Another One Bites The Dust’ by Queen. Frankie and I are watching this, the punches are being thrown, and we’re going, ‘Holy crap, this is working like a charm.’ We called Stallone and said, ‘Why aren’t you using that?’ He goes, ‘Well, we can’t get the publishing rights to it.’ Frankie and I looked at each other and went, ‘Man, this is going to be tough to beat.’ We had the spirit of, ‘We’ve got to try to top this.’ I started doing that now-famous dead string guitar riff and started slashing those chords to the punches we saw on the screen, and the whole song took shape in the next three days.”
- The iconic title of this song was not a sure thing. Jim Peterik told us: “At first, we wondered if calling it ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ was too obvious. The initial draft of the song, we started with ‘It’s the eye of the tiger, it’s the thrill of the fight, rising up to the spirit of our rival, and the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night, and it all comes down to survival.’ We were going to call the song ‘Survival.’ In the rhyme scheme, you can tell we had set up ‘rival’ to rhyme with ‘survival.’ At the end of the day, we said, ‘Are we nuts?’ That hook is so strong, and ‘rival’ doesn’t have to be a perfect rhyme with the word ‘tiger.’ We made the right choice and went with ‘Eye Of The Tiger.'”
- In 1984, Weird Al Yankovic recorded a parody of this song called “The Rye or the Kaiser (theme from Rocky XIII),” which finds Rocky working at a deli in his old age, still punching slabs of meat from time to time. Yankovic was a bit prescient, as there ended up being six Rocky movies, although none of them featured Rocky working in a deli. (thanks, Cliff – Burkesville, KY)
- Katy Perry invoked the eye of the tiger on her 2013 #1 hit “Roar,” where she sings, “I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter…” Perry paid no royalties to the “Eye of the Tiger” songwriters, who decided not to pursue legal action, even though it was a little disconcerting. Jim Peterik told us: “People say, ‘Oh, I love Katy Perry’s version of your song ‘Eye of the Tiger.” And I’m going, ‘No, that’s not our song. That’s called ‘Roar’ and they used the phrase ‘eye of the tiger,’ and ‘we will rock you,’ and all these other references to pop/rock classics.’ But at the end of the day, I think ‘Eye of the Tiger,’ our song is timeless. And the Katy Perry is a good song that will probably come and go. I just think ‘Eye of the Tiger’ will stand forever.”
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