Olympics Opening Ceremony – The Playlist

The headlines will be all about the Queen sky-diving from a helicopter with Daniel Craig – and that’s not a sentence I thought I’d write when I woke up this morning – but let’s give Danny Boyle credit for the fact that this was surely the best-soundtracked Olympic ceremony ever. Frank Turner warmed the crowd up for what turned out to be a hurtling joy-ride through fifty years of British music.

Arctic Monkeys with producer James Ford. via @arcticmonkeysus.

The whole thing was far more ‘indie’ than anyone could have expected. Arctic Monkeys covering ‘Come Together’ (available now on iTunes)! Happy Mondays, Blur, Muse and New Order on the soundtrack! Even Two Door Cinema Club’s Alex Trimble got up and sang a song, just before the cauldron was lit – ‘Caliban’s Dream’, a track written especially for the ceremony by Underworld’s Rick Smith. Truly, this was the indie Olympics. And here are the songs that featured. Click here for a Spotify playlist of as many songs as are available.

Note: I’ve not included the songs that played during the athlete’s parade bit, because it was boring and I was doing something else. Apparently there was lots of good stuff – new Underworld remixes, for example, and erm, a U2 medley. Please do let me know what I’ve missed in the comments.


The Who, ‘Baba O’Riley’
Muse, ‘Map Of The Problematique’
Fuck Buttons, ‘Surf Solar’
Sex Pistols, ‘God Save The Queen’
The Clash, ‘London Calling’
Mike Oldfield, ‘Tubular Bells’
OMD, ‘Enola Gay’
Rizzle Kicks – ‘When I Was A Youngster’
The Jam, ‘Going Underground’
The Rolling Stones, ‘(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction’
The Beatles, ‘She Loves You’
Mud, ‘Tiger Feet’
Millie Small, ‘My Boy Lollipop’
Led Zeppelin, ‘Trampled Under Foot’
The Specials, ‘A Message To You Rudy’
David Bowie, ‘Starman’
Queen, ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’
Eric Clapton, ‘Wonderful Tonight’
Sex Pistols, ‘Pretty Vacant’
New Order, ‘Blue Monday’
Frankie Goes To Hollywood, ‘Relax’
Soul II Soul, ‘Back To Life’
Happy Mondays, Step On’
Eurythmics, Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This’
The Prodigy, ‘Firestarter’
Blur, ‘Song 2’
Underworld, ‘Born Slippy’
Dizzee Rascal, ‘Bonkers’
Amy Winehouse, ‘Valerie’
Muse, ‘Uprising’
Tinie Tempah, ‘Pass Out’
David Holmes, ‘I Heard Wonders’
Arctic Monkeys, ‘I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor’
The Beatles, ‘Come Together’ (Covered by Arctic Monkeys)
Pink Floyd, ‘Eclipse’
Underworld/Alex Trimble, ‘Caliban’s Dream’
The Beatles, ‘The End’
The Beatles, ‘Hey Jude’