Every now and then, a movie or television show will use a song that we haven’t heard in ages, while also introducing a new audience to a hit. There have been many rock songs that have found a second life due to being used on a popular soundtrack over the years, with some finding new heights on the chart. Here are the five biggest cases of classic rock hits being revived through movie soundtracks.
“Come and Get Your Love” by Redbone
Released in January 1974, “Come and Get Your Love” was a universally beloved hit for the remainder of the decade and the top-charting song for Redbone. It reached number five on the Billboard Hot 100 and sold over 1 million copies while being considered the fourth most successful song of the entire year.
Though the song has remained relevant since its release, it was in 2014 that it saw another massive surge in popularity. The opening scene of the first “Guardians of the Galaxy” film features Peter Quill (played by Chris Pratt) lip-syncing and dancing to the tune in a memorable opening by director James Gunn. “Come and Get Your Love” was later used on the Bill Burr animated series “F is for Family”, furthering its new popularity.
“Hooked on a Feeling” by Blue Swede
Speaking of “Guardians of the Galaxy”, there were plenty of classic rock hits that the film series brought back to the light, but we’ll limit it to just these two. The second is Blue Swede’s “Hooked on a Feeling”, which is a cover version of a cover version that was initially released in 1968 by Mark James, starting with the familiar “Ooga Chaka.”
The song was featured in the first “Guardians” film after the group is sent to a space prison and Peter Quill is tased for getting out of hand. The movie uses the song as a backdrop to show how the group slowly started to learn to trust one another during their time in lockup while they start to put together the pieces of each other’s history.
“Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen
“Bohemian Rhapsody” feels like it’s five different songs in one, and is considered one of the greatest rock hits of all time. When it was originally released in late 1975, “Bohemian Rhapsody” enjoyed a lot of success, reaching the top 10 of the Billboard charts. However, it wasn’t until it was used in the memorable “Wayne’s World” scene in 1992 that it really took off.
Almost everyone and their brother was recreating the popular scene that takes place in Wayne’s car, and it revived worldwide interest in Queen’s music. The biopic that would eventually be released detailing Freddy Mercury’s life was also called “Bohemian Rhapsody” and was released in 2018.
“Tiny Dancer” by Elton John
The Elton John classic “Tiny Dancer” is an all-timer, even though the original release wasn’t a radio hit due to its length of over six minutes. In fact, “Tiny Dancer” wouldn’t even reach the top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100, and actually reached its peak in Australia of all countries, as it made it to number 13.
There was a huge influx of interest in the song in 2000 when it was featured in the film “Almost Famous” which earned Oscar nominations for Kate Hudson and Frances McDormand. The song got a lot of usage in “Almost Famous”, including the most memorable scene of the main cast singing it together in a van.
“Something in the Way” by Nirvana
Nirvana had a ton of hit songs off of their “Nevermind” album, but “Something in the Way” was sort of a deep track. The song was actually a bit of a hidden track as there were 10 minutes of silence before the track started to play on the original album. “Something in the Way” finally reached a lot of fans for the first time when it was featured prominently in the 2022 film “The Batman”.
The film had a lot of people Googling the song, and the new interest allowed “Something in the Way” to reach the top 50 of the Billboard charts for the first time in 2022. Even in countries like Greece and Iceland, it was able to find the top 40 charts.