Let’s Do the Time Warp: ’70s Songs Dominate ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Soundtrack

By Brian Ives 

Most films from Marvel Studios are introduced to the public, backed by ominous sounding orchestral scores signaling some impending danger that only the world’s greatest heroes can save us from. And that’s how the first Guardians of the Galaxy trailer started. It soon takes a trip a few decades back to some of the most memorable pop hits of the ’70s, which will make up the film’s soundtrack.

At the start of the trailer, Djimon Hounsou’s character (Korath the Pursuer) approaches Chris Pratt’s Peter Quill (a.k.a. Starlord) trying to take an cosmic looking jewel, Indiana Jones style.  “Who are you?” he asks.


“Who?” Korath asks, mirroring the thoughts of most people watching the trailer. The Guardians aren’t the Avengers; there’s no Captain America, Hulk or Iron Man in this collective.

“Starlord, man, the legendary outlaw?” Quill asks hopefully.

After that, John C. Reilly’s Rhomann Dey is conducting a police lineup where we meet the rest of the team, including Rocket Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper) and Groot, a walking, talking tree (voiced by Vin Diesel).

But 1:40 into the trailer (below), when a security guard dons Quill’s old-school Sony Walkman (complete with orange foam headphones – an artifact of the ’80s, not the ’70s) we hear what the protagonist was listening to: the Blue Swede hit “Hooked on a Feeling,” a No. 1 hit on the U.S. singles charts in 1974.

The film’s second trailer only waits about 30 seconds to go back to the ’70s. This time, they use Norman Greenbaum‘s #3 hit from 1970 (although it was released in 1969), “Spirit in the Sky.” But when Groot messes with the very ’70s looking cassette deck (containing a tape labeled “Awesome Mix Vol. 1), the song changes back to, again, “Hooked on a Feeling.”

The sci-fi blog I09 reveled the entire track list of the Guardians soundtrack last night (July 2), and it’s filled with other ’70s gems (as well as a pair of Motown hits from the prior decade: the Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back” and the Marvin Gaye/Tammi Terrell duet “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”). Here’s the full list, all of which are presumably on the “Awesome Mix”:

1. Blue Swede – Hooked on a Feeling
2. Raspberries – Go All the Way
3. Norman Greenbaum – Spirit in the Sky
4. David Bowie – Moonage Daydream
5. Elvin Bishop – Fooled Around and Fell in Love
6. 10Cc – I’m Not in Love
7. Jackson 5 – I Want You Back
8. Redbone – Come and Get Your Love
9. The Runaways – Cherry Bomb
10. Rupert Holmes – Escape (The Pina Colada Song)
11. The Five Stairsteps – O-O-H Child
12. Marvin Gaye/Tammi Terrell – Ain’t No Mountain High Enough

The soundtrack will be available on July 29; the film hits theaters Aug. 1.


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