Music and sports is just like ice cream and chocolate syrup.
One goes with the other and most people who like ice cream prefer a dose of dribbled liquid chocolate just as many athletes' pre-game ritual includes a rock block of their favorite band or string of songs.
It's no different in Supercross and Motocross. The opening ceremonies at every Supercross round include a rider's favorite song during introductions. Check out the pros during the track walk or right before gate drop - plugs stuffed in their ears or headphones wrapped around their heads as favorite beats amp them for the upcoming dual between man, machine and their competitors. Whether it's the head banging anthologies of metal's finest - and sometimes not so finest - angst ridden punk operas or just straight up rock and roll, music gets us in the mood, raises our blood pressure and offers audio encouragement to bring it.
So what's playing?
Good Dirt Bike Songs
Ask 10 riders and you won't get the same Top 10 list or even close to it. Different strokes for different folks as they say. In fact, you'd fare better expecting a completed novel after putting a monkey in a room with a typewriter. Quite simply we all have our favorite melodies that get our hearts and minds ready for battle. What works for you may or may not work for someone else therefore the best MX music often depends on one's life experience or imagination.
However, you can probably bet the response from 10 riders results in at least one or two crossovers all agree that rocks and it works for me. Therefore, we attempted to find some common ground, asked around and came up with the following Top 10 list of bands dirt bike riders could agree get them ready to roll. No (c)rap here! We offer real music.
WADA keeps you from cutting your breakfast on a mirror (well, at least most riders) but a dose of "Master of Puppets," "Damage, Inc." and "One" should get you high enough to make some aggressive passes and launch that triple no one else dares try.
Many tools make up necessary items in your garage, in the pits and perhaps some of the competition on the track, but the band Tool offers plenty of sinister rhythms and heavy chords combined with satisfying melodies to help wrench you into race day game face.
Good luck to anyone who chooses "666" as their number. Show up with that and everyone will run to the hills. But a little Maiden never hurt anyone and these classic metal rockers still kicking after nearly 40 years offer the adrenaline fueled guitar chords riders relish while waiting in the pits.
One of the few acts to emerge unscathed from the Southern California punk scene of the 1980s. It's typical punk rock fare with hyper drum fills, driving guitar, a front man who sings like he talks and a catalogue of songs well under the three minute mark. Fast and furious, nobody gets the punk rocker and nobody understands the dirt biker. Probably why the two mesh so well together.
Simple A,C,D, C? chords mixed into a straight 4/4 time signature an anthem rock tune make. "Thunderstruck" and "T.N.T" help compile the playlist of every national sporting event and likely shuffle along with "Shoot to Thrill" and "Back in Black" on the iPods of Motocross amateurs and pros everywhere.
Torque wrench, socket wrench and "Monkey Wrench." Moto wives and gal pals dreamily think "There goes my hero" as their love flies over a table top and it was all made possible by a long setlist of the screaming Dave Grohl warning about the competition getting the "Best of You."
Guns N' Roses
Have you ever looked over at the rider next to you and mouthed, "Welcome to my jungle"? Well, that's exactly what Zach Osborne did to Joey Savatgy at the final round of the 2017 Supercross season. OK, we don't know if he actually did but it would hardly surprise if Guns N' Roses filled his RV as he dressed for the 250 Shootout. Oh yeah? So what if no one can name a song off The Spaghetti Incident? to save their life.
Nine Inch Nails
#obscure especially for the youngsters trying to fit in by listening to Aborted Fetus. The name alone should immediately entice and those of us already familiar with the repeat button for "Head Like A Hole" know its refrain well as we sit atop the podium.
The Bad Boys of Hollywood hung up their guitars and drum sticks a few years ago, at least in terms of touring together, but glam rock never sounded so good when these guys played in sync. From the guitar thumping intro on "Dr. Feelgood" to the striking "Wild Side" and the appropriately titled "Kickstart My Heart" Motley Crue delivers the amped up goods.
Punk rock and dirt bikes have a long history together so we'd be remiss not to include one of the godfather's of the genre in Mike Ness and his band Social Distortion. Though Ness clipped his punk roots long ago, Social D probably enjoys a similar loyal following as Motocross and - just like riding dirt bikes - while not for everybody neither was the punk movement with hard-edged melodies and Ness bringing his gnarly snarl to the microphone.