Thursday, 22 March 2018

Top 10 WWF / WWE Wrestling Themes of the 1980s

top 10 WWF wrestling themes of the 1980s
Just recently, we got done reviewing the two major contributions to music  m made by pro wrestling in the 1980s  - first 1985's Wrestling Album and its 1987 follow-up, Piledriver: The Wrestling Album 2

There was some dross on those albums sure (hello, Land of 1,000 Dances) but there was also a lot of good stuff too (Rock 'n' Roll Hoochie Coo anyone?), and that got me thinking.

Namely, it got me thinking about the fact that so many of my favourite pro wrestling themes, particularly from the World Wrestling Federation, came from the 80s.

With that in mind, here's the Retro Pro Wrestling guide to the top 10 wrestling themes of the 1980s.

10: Brutus 'The Barber' Beefcake 

No, I'm deadly serious.

Though I'm not sure it was entirely suited to a male-stripper-cum-hairdresser, Brutus 'The Barber' Beefcake's theme tune was a terreffically fun piece of music that always had me bopping along whenever the Booty Man would make his way ringside.

I even mentioned in an earlier review what a good little track it was.

OK, so it wasn't exactly iconic like a lot of stuff on this list, but it was undeniably catchy, and a great fit for the popular crowd favourite.

9: The Rockers


Given how truly iconic 'Sexy Boy' would become, I think many of us overlook what a kick-ass track Shawn Michaels' first WWF entrance theme really was.

Tearing to the ring with partner, Marty Jannetty, Michaels' Rockers entrance was always a highlight of late-80s WWF programming for this writer, and a big part of that was because of this theme.

Sure,  it sounds a lot like a demo version of The Ultimate Warrior's track, but then who says that's a bad thing?

8: Macho Man Randy Savage - Pomp & Circumstance


The very first moment that first chord strikes up - you know you're in for something special. Despite what you might think about the late Warrior's personal views, there's no denying that when it comes to being a physical presence back in the late 1980s and early 1990s, nobody came close to The Ultimate Warrior.

What he lacked in wrestling ability, the Warrior made up for by being a force of pure cosmic insanity that was just fascinating to watch as a kid, and I dare say that the man who would become one of the most popular characters of all time just wouldn't have been half as entertaining without this smash-mouth theme tune.

 6: Mr. Perfect - Perfect


And no, we're not talking about that abomination of a remix/audio vomit that was the Mr. Perfect song from 1993's Wrestlemania: The Album.

We're talking about that magical, grandiose piece of music that would accompany the one and only Curt Hennig (and was later ripped off for Shawn Stasiak in WCW), the one that when you hear it you instantly know you're in for a great match, the one that is, in every sense of the word, the perfect theme.

Yeah, I went there.

5: Million Dollar Man Ted Dibiase - It's All About The Money 


Few wrestling themes from any era are quite as instantly recognisable as the soundtrack of evilness that was The Million Dollar Man's theme - and not just because Ted Dibiase himself played the role to perfection.

From Ted's opening cackle to Jimmy Hart's Nintendo-esque guitar riff, everything about this theme is glorious, not to mention seriously addictive.

Trust me - listen to the video and then go about your day. I bet you find yourself singing "money, money, money, money, mu-kneeee" at least once today.

4: Slick - Jive Soul Bro 


As I believe I mentioned in my review of Piledriver, I'm never entirely sure if it's politically correct to like Jive Soul Bro, but damn do I find it entertaining.

You see, although it may very catchy and infectious and full of the kind of rhythms that force you to bop your head whenever you hear it, what really makes Jive Soul Bro such a great song is that -like all good wrestling themes- it perfectly embodies the character that was Slick.

For those only familiar with The Doctor of Style from that time he officiated Daniel Bryan & Aj Lee's wedding, he was a devious and conniving heel manager who espoused the idea that 'honesty is the best policy' despite being one of the most dishonest guys on the roster.

It was a character that Slick played wonderfully, and that he carries forward in this song as he talks about all his failed attempts to be a player  and date multiple women.

The man was hysterical, and easily one of my favourite characters of the decade.

Take one listen, and I'm sure you'll see why.

3: Derringer - Demolition 



'Here comes the Ax, and here comes the Smash-ugh'

The second you heard those words, delivered in a guttural snarl over a menacing, heavy metal guitar riff, you know you were about to see one of the most unique acts in the WWF at that time.

From their BDSM-style ring attire to their face paint and no-BS ring style, Demolition were like nothing else.

I mean, yes, they were a direct rip-off of The Road Warriors, but when you're a little kid, you neither know, nor care about that.

All you care about is these two bad-ass dudes coming down the ring to destroy somebody. It was exciting as hell, and that excitement started the very moment you heard this hard-hitting Derringer track, taken from the Piledriver album.

2: The Fabulous Rougeau Brothers - All American Boys  



Glorious, hilarious, and ridiculously catchy, Jimmy Hart penned this theme for his Canadian team The Fabulous Rougeau Brothers, and it's been one of my favourites since.

OK, so it lacks the bad-ass riffage of Rick Derringer's Demolition theme, and it isn't quite as iconic as the song that's in our number one spot, but then very few actually are.

Instead, what we've got here is a track that was so perfectly suited to Jacques and Raymond, two brothers who managed that rare feat of pulling off the 'we're nice guys really' heel gimmick to perfection.

Honestly, just give it a listen - isn't it fantastic?

1: Hulk Hogan - Real American 



I love All American Boys so much that I was tempted to give it the number one spot, but let's be honest:

How could I?

How could I justify handing the title of the 1980s Wrestling theme to two Canadians pretending to be Americans when we've got the actual, genuine, Real American right here?

Besides, it's Hulk F'N Hogan - the embodiment of 80s wrestling and the reason why we're even talking about the WWF and it's superstars here today.

Yes, I know the track was originally intended for I.R.S and The Stalker, but aren't you glad this scorching rock song became synonymous with the biggest thing in wrestling instead?

I mean Real American sounds HUGE in every possible sense of the word.

I still get shivers down my spine when I hear it even today, and you better believe  that it doesn't take long for me to start rocking out when I hear that sharp-yet-strangely-uplifting guitar riff.

Here's to Real American.

Here's to Hulk Hogan.

Here's to all the stars -and the rocking tunes- that made the 1980s such a fun time to be a wrestling fan.



Disagree with any of my picks?

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Retro Pro Wrestling

New reviews of classic WWF/WWE events recalling every moment from Wrestlemania 1 - 30. You'll also find reviews of WCW, ECW, TNA and the occasional indie event, along with a look at old school magazines, merchandise and more.