8 World Cup Songs That Make You Wanna Kick Off Your Shoes -- From Ricky Martin to Shakira!
By Liz Calvario
Music has a way of bringing people from all over the world together.
June 14 marks the official kick-off of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. The quadrennial international soccer tournament not only unites football players from all over the globe, it also delivers infectious, get-up-and-dance inspiring songs from the hottest artists.
Originated in 1962 with Los Ramblers, the Chilean rock group was the first to create the World Cup song frenzy with their ode to soccer, "El Rock del Mundial." Since then, musicians like Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Carlos Santana and Shakira (the unofficial queen of the World Cup) have each had the honor of being part of the celebration.
And now, ET is rounding up eight of the most memorable World Cup anthems and songs.
1962: "El Rock del Mundial" -- Los Ramblers
Held in Chile, the rock band paid tribute to the popular sport and its native country with this single. While it wasn’t the official anthem for the World Cup, it was the first track to be heavily used during the tournament and was well received by the public.
1998: "La Copa de la Vida (The Cup of Life)" -- Ricky Martin
Right around the beginning of the Latin explosion, the former Menudo singer struck it worldwide with this sizzling summer jam! "The Cup of Life" became the official song of the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France, topping the charts in many countries around the world and (most importantly) introducing many people to Ricky Martin! To this day, it's still considered one of the best World Cup songs.
2006: "Hips Don't Lie (Bamboo mix)" -- Shakira and Wyclef Jean
Shakira's first shot at World Cup glory was at the 2006 World Cup in Berlin, Germany, with the festive remix. The original song was released earlier that year in February, but it was chosen for the tournament's closing ceremony on July 9.
2010: "Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)" -- Shakira featuring Freshlyground
2010 marked Shakira's second World Cup appearance, this time "Waka Waka" was dubbed the official song for the tournament in South Africa. Written, composed, and produced by Shakira and John Hill, the lyrics encourage one to aim for their goals like a soldier on a battlefield. The track received positive reviews and praise from the public and critics.
The video also featured appearances by soccer stars Cristiano Ronaldo, Dani Alves, Carlos Kameni, Lionel Messi, Rafael Marquez, and Gerard Piqué, Shakira's now-partner.
2014: "Dar um Jeito (We Will Find a Way)" -- Santana and Wyclef Jean featuring Avicii and Alexandre Pires
Wyclef Jean also returned to the World Cup in 2014 when it was held in Brazil. The rapper, along with the guitar icon, Swedish DJ and Brazilian singer, had the honor of performing the official FIFA anthem at the closing ceremony. It was also featured in One Love, One Rhythm – The 2014 FIFA World Cup Official Album.
2014: "We Are One (Ole Ola)" -- Pitbull, Jennifer Lopez and Claudia Leitte
Additionally, Jennifer Lopez made her World Cup debut alongside Mr. 305 and the Brazilian singer when their catchy tune was selected as the official song. "We Are One," which was performed by the artists during the opening ceremony, gets you on your feet and moving. While the video is vibrant and fun, reviews for it were lukewarm.
2014: "La La La (Brazil 2014)" -- Shakira
And this is why Shakira is the unofficial World Cup queen! Coming in to get everybody's hips moving, the Colombian singer's track was reworked and released as the second theme song for the World Cup in Brazil. Praised by music critics and a commercial success, the video pays tribute to Afro-Brazilian heritage and tribal imagery. Messi, Neymar, Cesc Fàbregas, Sergio Agüero, Radamel Falcao, James Rodríguez and Eric Abidal made special cameos. But people really enjoyed seeing Shakira's boyfriend Piqué and their son Milan.
2018: "Live It Up" -- Nicky Jam, Will Smith and Era Istrefi
This year, Puerto Rican singer Nicky Jam, Will Smith and Era Istrefi's tune was chosen as the official song for the World Cup in Russia. The song has an inspirational message that states: "One life to love. Live it up."
"To record the Official Song for the FIFA World Cup is a lifetime achievement," Nicky Jam expressed when the song was announced. "Not many artists have the privilege of being able to say they've been part of this. I'm so proud and happy. I can say to my grandkids 'I've made it.'"