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Top 10 World Cup Songs

VO: Adrian Sousa
script by George Pacheco Goooooaaaaallll!! Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 World Cup Songs. For this list, we'll be ranking the most popular or influential songs that were used as anthems to represent the FIFA World Cup Tournament. We'll be considering official and unofficial songs for this list, just so long as they were closely associated or easily identifiable with the games. Like our videos? Head over to WatchMojo.comsuggest to submit your own video ideas today!
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Top 10 World Cup Songs

 
Goooooaaaaallll!! Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 World Cup Songs.
 
For this list, we'll be ranking the most popular or influential songs that were used as anthems to represent the FIFA World Cup Tournament. We'll be considering official and unofficial songs for this list, just so long as they were closely associated or easily identifiable with the games.
 

#10: "The Time of Our Lives" (2006)
Il Divo & Toni Braxton

 
We kick off our list with two musical flavors which may not, at first glance, mesh together: opera and R&B. "The Time of Our Lives" brought together classical vocal icons Il Divo and American singer Toni Braxton for a slow and moving ballad, used during the 2006 World Cup in Germany. The song has a nineties flair to it, likely due to Braxton's involvement, while Il Divo's trained precision gives the whole thing a level of class. It's the melding of two genres that makes "The Time of Our Lives" stand out, however, and proves that sometimes musical opposites can attract.
 
 

#9: "Gloryland" (1994)
Daryl Hall & Sounds of Blackness

 
Music fans may closely associate Daryl Hall with the 1980s music scene, but the blue-eyed soul singer is very respected as an artist, even chalking up this anthem for the 1994 World Cup in the United States. Hall collaborated with the award winning vocal group Sounds of Blackness for this song, which adapts a melody slightly similar to "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," while evoking mental images of America's heartland. Hall is pure class as his charismatic vocals blend perfectly with the power of Sounds of Blackness. It's one heck of an anthem indeed.

 

#8: "We Are One (Ole Ola)" (2014)
Pitbull feat. Jennifer Lopez & Claudia Leitte

 
We're not sure why FIFA decided that the 2014 Brazilian World Cup needed a bomb of booty shakin' beats, but that's what they got when they brought Pitbull, Jennifer Lopez and Claudia Leitte to the party. "We Are One (Ole Ola)" is a dance anthem that boasts a sexy groove and sing-a-long chorus that's super-easy to learn, ensuring that football fans would be dancing in their seats in no time. "We Are One (Ole Ola)" is probably one of the most fun songs on this list; a hot and breezy jam perfect for the Brazilian games.

 

#7: "Anthem" (2002)
Vangelis

 
Vangelis may be known primarily for his moody soundtrack work, or his career with formidable prog rockers Aphrodite's Child, but did you know he also contributed the instrumental anthem to the Korean/Japanese World Cup in 2002? The song was appropriately titled...well, "Anthem," and was released in an orchestral version, as well as the electronic medium for which Vangelis is best known. The song strays a bit from the composer's soundtrack work on films like "Chariots of Fire" or "Blade Runner," injecting an infectious Euro-pop vibe to a short, but sweet bit of techno-electronica.

 

#6: "Un'estate italiana" (1990)
Edoardo Bennato & Gianna Nannini

 
If the slick production and catchy melodies behind "Un'estate italiana" sound familiar, that's because the song was co-written by Giorgio Moroder, the man responsible for writing numerous soundtrack and pop hits during the 1970s and '80s. Moroder's anthem for the 1990 Italian World Cup is performed by natives Gianna Nannini and Edoardo Bennato, and it wouldn't be out of place amongst the composer's other work with Berlin, Donna Summer or Bonnie Tyler. Nannini's powerful, gritty vocals are actually similar to Tyler's own dramatic voice, and her and Bennato soar above Moroder's epic, synthesized pop/rock melody with ease. If there was ever a FIFA anthem that could double as a soundtrack hit, it's this one.
 
 

#5: "El Rock del Mundial" (1962)
Los Ramblers

 
Everything has a beginning, and when it comes to FIFA World Cup anthems, that beginning is "El Rock del Mundial" by Los Ramblers, the soundtrack to the seventh World Cup back in 1962. The games that year were held in Chile, which may bring to mind some sort of bossa nova or tropicalia sound, right? Nope, "El Rock del Mundial" is a tried 'n true slice of old fashioned rock and roll, the sort of swingin' tune that wouldn’t sound out of place blaring at a drive in, or as the soundtrack to a sock hop. Still, Los Ramblers know how to write a catchy tune, and it somehow all works perfectly.
 

#4: "World in Motion" (1990)
New Order

 
We mentioned Giorgio Moroder's 1990 World Cup anthem earlier in the video, but the Italian games that year also had an unofficial song, one that also brought the electronic thunder. New Order were formed from the ashes of post-punk icons Joy Division, and adapted a dance-friendly '80s aesthetic to their formerly gloomy sound, achieving a number of hits in the process. "World in Motion" was a smash for New Order, serving as their only number one hit at home, and even featured a guest rap verse from one of the English players, John Barnes. The whole affair is cheeky and light hearted, but also infectious and fun.
 
 

#3: "Wavin' Flag (Coca-Cola Celebration Mix)" (2010)
K'naan

 
The next song on our list was originally recorded by Somali hip-hop/reggae fusion artist K'naan, and released on his 2009 album "Troubadour." "Wavin' Flag" has seen a long life over the years, having been remade by a host of Canadian artists, including Drake and Avril Lavigne, for the charity group Young Artists for Haiti following the 2010 Haiti earthquake. The song would be adopted yet again in 2010 by the Coca-Cola Company to promote that year's World Cup in South Africa, and was released as a "Coca-Cola Celebration" mix, complete with anthemic "whoah-ohs" and a simple, yet memorable chorus.
 
 

#2:"Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)" (2010)
Shakira feat. Freshlyground

 
K'naan's "Wavin' Flag" was an unofficial anthem for the 2010 South African games, but that year's official jam was Shakira's "Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)." The song uses a pulsing beat to drive home a fun and light-hearted groove, while Shakira's vocals are equally upbeat and positive. This wouldn't be the last time the Colombian hit maker would have a song used for the World Cup, either, as Shakira collaborated with Carlinhos Brown in 2014 for "La La La," the official song of the 2014 Brazilian World Cup.
 
 
Before we name our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions!
 
"Boom" (2002)
Anastacia
 
 
"Celebrate the Day" (2006)
Herbert Grönemeyer feat. Amadou et Mariam
 

 
"La Cour des Grands" (1998)
Youssou N'Dour & Axelle Red
 
 

#1:"La Copa de la Vida " [aka “The Cup of Life”] (1998)
Ricky Martin

 
Some of the World Cup anthems on this list may be foreign to music fans who don't follow football, but odds are pretty good that even casual soccer fans are familiar with this hit from Latin pop icon Ricky Martin. "La Copa de la Vida" was released in Spanish and English versions, with video clips for both, and is carved from the same stone of funky pop that Martin known for. The song is immediate in its mission to get you up, out of your seat and dancing, serving as the perfect anthem for the 1998 World Cup games in France. We'll take a double shot from this "Cup of Life" please!
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