For this week’s Superhero Playlist, we’re paying tribute to one of our favorite Avengers, old Cap himself, Captain America! This one’s a bit harder, because Cap skipped over a big chunk of music history during his time as a popsicle…but we’ll pretend like he has been doing his musical research with Sam Wilson, and throw in some more recent hits. A playlist of 1940s music might not be the most entertaining (although we’ll throw in a few for good measure). So what does Steve Rodgers have on his playlist as he’s taking on the hordes of Hydra soldiers and enemies of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Let’s check and see!
The Star Spangled Banner , Live at Woodstock – Jimi Hendrix, 1969
Alright, so Steve Rodgers didn’t get to experience Woodstock during his time spent frozen in the arctic, but for someone with so much patriotism and passion for his country, this song is surely one to pull on Cap’s heartstrings while also giving him a taste of the awesome rock guitar and music that he missed out on. Jimi Hendrix’s intense rendition of our nation’s anthem at Woodstock 1969 is considered one of the greatest patriotic songs of all time, and certainly one could argue that the goings on at Woodstock were symbolic of the growth and evolution of thinkers in the United States. Even though they changed the world that he knew, Cap still would tip his cap to the thinkers and artists of the 60s.
Born in the U.S.A. – Bruce Springsteen, 1984
One that can’t be forgotten is Bruce Springsteen’s, “Born in the U.S.A.”. Captain America can probably relate to any song that references war and the patriotism that all soldiers share. Whether it is referencing WW2, Vietnam, or the war in the Middle East, Cap gets it. The lyrics, “Born down in a dead man’s town, the first kick I took was when I hit the ground,” seem to capture Captain America’s rough beginnings. However, his willingness to fight for his country led to him becoming the nation’s most valued soldier.
Pretty Peggy-O – Bob Dylan, 1962
Cap’s greatest love was his WW2 comrade, Peggy Carter. The tragedy that Cap was never able to live out the life that he had imagined spending with Peggy is perhaps the saddest part of Captain America’s history in comics. This song is a great choice for Steve’s playlist, and you’ll see why from the lyrics. “Well, our captain fell in love, with a lady like a dove. Her name that she had was pretty Peggy-O.” It doesn’t get more perfect than that. Too bad Cap had to wait more than 50 years to hear this song, because he would have loved to share a moment with Peggy while they listened along.
I Won’t Back Down – Tom Petty, 1989
This is a great song for Captain America because it perfectly captures the strength and determination that make Cap such a formidable opponent and strong ally. He won’t back away from any fight, and is willing to do whatever it takes to achieve his goals. He simply won’t back down.
Take the A Train – Duke Ellington, 1943
In a nod to his roots, we’ve thrown in a few songs that Cap might have listened to before his time in the ice. Not only is this song one of the top hits in the 40s, but it also could be easily interpreted to be about the trains in New York City, Steve’s hometown. You can’t deny that the 40s had some of the best music vibes in history, either.
Philadelphia Freedom – Elton John, 1973
“From the day I was born I’ve waved the flag,” seems like a fitting lyric for Steve Rodgers. He bleeds red, white, and blue, and has since he was a boy. Regardless of the super-soldier serum, Steve Rodgers is one of the most patriotic souls in America. This tribute to America from Elton John captures that pride and upbeat love of the U.S.A., and certainly would make Cap happy.
Moonlight Cocktail – Glenn Miller & his Orchestra, 1942
Might Cap have had this song in mind as he plunged into the icy Arctic? He did promise Peggy one last dance…maybe this would have been his choice for that special occasion. It is a perfect, slow dancing song by a great band with excellent vocals. Here’s hoping Cap gets to share a dance to this song with some special lady one day.
We’re an American Band – Grand Funk Railroad, 1973
Would you like a side of cowbell with your red, white, and blue? We thought so. Well, if Captain America can appreciate a great rock group with a taste for the patriotic, then this the perfect choice for his playlist. Grand Funk Railroad’s classic song would be a great song for Cap to play while flying a quinjet into battle. Maybe he thinks of the Avengers as his “American Band.”
R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A. – John Cougar Mellencamp, 1985
Just in case Captain America needs a little refresher on the history of rock music in the United States, he can always throw on this classic hit. John Mellencamp gives a breakdown of the greatest founders of rock and roll when he says, “There was Frankie Lyman, Bobby Fuller, Mitch Ryder. They were rockin’. Jackie Wilson, Shangra-las, Young Rascals. They were rockin’. Spotlight on Martha Reeves, let’s don’t forget James Brown. Rockin’ in the U.S.A.” But hey, the best part is it’s just a really catchy song.
America, F#ck Yeah! – Team America, 2004
Alright, so maybe Cap wouldn’t be a huge fan of this particular song, with its crude lyrics and hardcore interpretation of patriotism…but c’mon. How could we not put this one on the list? Just picture Captain America riding in on a motorcycle, blasting this song, and tell me that his enemies aren’t going to be a little bit scared. Heck, at least maybe they’ll get a laugh out of it.
Don’t forget to comment below if you have any suggestions for other songs we might have missed, and feel free to request heroes/villains for future installments of Superhero Playlist. Disagree with any of our picks? Let us know! It’s all in good fun. And make sure you keep an eye out for future Superhero Playlists every Wednesday!