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Y’all Ready for This?: Every Single ‘Jock Jam,’ Ranked

Our very scientific rating system has determined the order of all 74 Jock Jams.

by Dan Ozzi and Aaron Gordon
Oct 27 2015, 4:39pm

There are really only three American institutions worth taking pride in: Red Lobster’s unlimited Shrimpfest, Black Friday doorbuster deals at Wal-Mart, and Jock Jams. In case you did not grow up in the glory days of Starter jackets and Fleer trading cards, Jock Jams was a series of CD compilations, collecting the greatest songs from stadiums and arenas played to pump up the crowd and athletes during games. These were no bargain bin CDs, either. Many of them hit the Billboard 100 list. The second volume hit number 10!

Across five volumes—yes, there were five of these things, plus an All-Star edition if we’re being technical—Jock Jams provided us with over 100 tracks harnessing the raw, explosive musical power of the day-glo 1990s. Some of them are stone cold classics. Some make you say, “Oh, yeah… I think I remember this song?” And some flat-out couldn’t pump up a pair of fresh Reebok Pumps if they were the only sneakers left at Foot Locker.

Recently, Noisey’s Dan Ozzi sat down with Vice SportsAaron Gordon to listen to every single Jock Jam in an attempt to provide the definitive order. We removed the many announcer clips, cheerleader chants, and various other garbage they peppered into them to make the sticker price seem at Sam Goody worthwhile.

Songs were ranked on the following criteria:

Pump-up-ability (1-20): Does this get you pumped? If you were the head point-getting person and your team was down by one with seconds to go in the big game, would this song elevate you to the level where your performance would increase and you’d lead your team to victory?

Stadium Allure (1-10): Does this song feel at home over the loudspeakers? Would you be OK with hearing this song every time you go to a sporting event for the next 20 years?

Marquee Music (1-5): How likely is the song to be played when they show someone’s name in lights, either when they’ve just come through on a clutch play or run out of the tunnel?

74. Funky Green Dogs - “Fired Up” (Vol. 3)

Contrary to its title, this song will actually NOT get you fired up. All promise and no delivery. Not what we’ve come to expect from Funky Green Dogs.

Pump-up-ability: 0
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 0

73. Cheryl Lynn - “Got to Be Real” (Vol. 5)

Towards the end of its life, Jock Jams was really stretching the idea of what a “jock jam” was and was digging deep into “songs your aunt goes nuts for at a 40th wedding anniversary party” territory.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

72. Elvis Crespo - “Suavamente” (Vol. 5)

This song would pump you up to take introductory tango lessons and that’s about it.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

71. Next - “Too Close” (Vol. 5)

This is an R&B song about getting a boner, which is a terrible thing to happen when you're playing sports. Also, at :55 in, you'll hear the source material for the “Why you always lyin’?” guy, which is now an instant ether to any athlete.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

70. Cevin Fisher - “Burnin’ Up”

How could someone pump you up if they spell Kevin with a C? No Cevin has ever been taken seriously. Sorry to all the Cevins out there but get it together.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

69. The Tamperer Featuring Maya - “Feel It” (Vol. 5)

This song is the epitome of a song you think you may have heard at some point but then again you might’ve just made it up.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

68. Deborah Cox - “Nobody's Supposed To Be Here (Remix)” (Vol. 5)

We’re not even sure if this is the right remix of this song. That’s how little Jock Jams cared about their legacy by Volume 5. Just slapping any ol’ remix on there.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

67. Perfecto All-Starz - “Reach Up” (Vol. 5)

This is just a beat. It’s not even a good one.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

66. Hypertrophy - "Beautiful Day" (Vol. 4)

A good Jock Jam doesn’t have a title like “Beautiful Day." Good Jock Jams have titles like “Jump 2 Real” and “Jam Up the Pumps” and “Pumpin’ the 2 Real Jams.” What is this, a U2 song?

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

65. Amber - “One More Night” (Vol 4)

Pass.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

64. Sabrina Sang - “Supersonic Love” (Vol. 3)

No.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

63. Freak Nasty - “Da Dip” (Vol. 4)

Gotta say, this is a really disappointing showing from a guy named Freak Nasty.

Pump-up-ability: 0
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 1

62. The Goodmen - “Give It Up” (Vol. 2)

This is utter shit. Every Jock Jam has that signature 20 seconds. This song has nothing. It is a slow fizzle. It’s the firecracker that didn’t go off.

Pump-up-ability: 1
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 1

61. 69 Boyz - “Woof Woof” (Vol. 2)

This is either a poor man’s “Whoomp! There It Is” or a rich man’s “Who Let the Dogs Out?”

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 2

60. Busta Rhymes - “Turn It Up” (Vol. 2)

Two courtesy pump points for Busta Rhymes’ natural pump-up-friendly delivery.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 2

59. Brooklyn Bounce - “Get Ready to Bounce” (Vol. 4)

Well, if you were looking for a song to amp you up to do acid at Limelight, this is your jam.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 2

58. Jellyhead - “Crush” (Vol. 3)

Throw this song in the trash.

Pump-up-ability: 0
Stadium Allure: 2
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 2

57. Usher - “Nice and Slow (Remix)” (Vol. 5)

Basically, by Volume Five, Jock Jams had run out of songs three volumes ago and were content to take anything, find a remix, and stick Jock Jams logo on it.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 3

56. Will Smith - “Miami” (Vol. 5)

Do they even play this song outside of Heat games? Do they even play it at Heat games? There’s no way of knowing.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 3

55. Reel 2 Reel - “Move Your Body” (Vol. 4)

Well, this guy’s a big advocate of moving your body. Can’t take that away from him.

Pump-up-ability: 3
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 3

54. C+C Music Factory - “Robi Rob's Boriqua Anthem” (Vol. 3)

Ah yes, the lesser C +C Music Factory song.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 3

53. The Movement - “Jump” (Vol. 3)

Jock Jams got so distilled to blunt phrases that we were down to just “jump!” as a hook. Why did we want people to jump so much? Why was jumping such a trend in the 90s?

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 3

52. Luke - “Raise the Roof” (Vol. 4)

What a terrible way to memorialize Stuart Scott.

Pump-up-ability: 4
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 4

51. Notorious B.I.G. - "Mo Money Mo Problems"

Oh no, Biggie. They got you in these crap-era volumes of Jock Jams too?

Pump-up-ability: 3
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 0

50. CeCe Peniston - “We Got A Love Thang” (Vol. 2)

Another garbage song. A slap in the face to the sanctity of early Jock Jams.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 2
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 4

49. Madonna - “Ray of Light” (Vol. 5)

Hey, coach. Put me in, I just listened to a boring-era Madonna and I am PUMPED.

Pump-up-ability: 4
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 5

48. Backstreet Boys - “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)” (Vol. 4)

The Backstreet Boys. God we were a pump-up desperate nation in the 90s.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 3
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 5

47. Livin Joy - “Don’t Stop Movin’” (Vol. 3)

She gives it her all, we’ll give her that.

Pump-up-ability: 4
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 5

46. Fatboy Slim - “Going Out of My Head” (Vol. 4)

There is literally nothing in this song.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 0
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 5

45. Strafe - “Set It Off” (Vol. 2)

The chorus of this song goes “set it off… I suggest.” What kind of beta shit is that, Strafe? You suggest you set it off? Buddy. If you want to be a Jock Jam, you demand that people set it off.

Pump-up-ability: 4
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 6

44. Amber - “This Is Your Night” (Vol.2)

It’s never good when your first thought upon hearing a Jock Jam is “ah yes, the Night at the Roxbury song.” Even Chris Kattan is probably sick of this song and what’s that guy got going on these days?

Pump-up-ability: 4
Stadium Allure: 2
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 6

43. 3rd Party - “Can U Feel It” (Vol. 4)

This is pretty pathetic and we’re really just throwing any damn numbers on these things to get to the good stuff.

Pump-up-ability: 6
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 7

42. Dis’n’dat - “Party” (Vol. 2)

A little formulaic but we appreciate their hustle.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 7

41. M|A|R|R|S - “Pump Up The Volume” (Vol. 1)

This is a song that tried and failed. It’s clear what they’re going for and they missed. They tried to do a spin dunk and bashed the rim.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 7

40. 69 Boyz - “Tootsie Roll” (Vol. 1)

Unfortunately, it makes you want to dance, not play basketball.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 6
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 8

39. Bizarre Inc. - “I’m Gonna Get You” (Vol. 1)

This could’ve easily been on the Where in the World Is Carmen San Diego? soundtrack.

Pump-up-ability: 2
Stadium Allure: 6
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 8

38. DJ Miko - “What’s Going On” (Vol. 2)

“You know what I bet will really rile up this crowd? A remix of a Four Non Blondes song.” - guy who got fired, hopefully

Pump-up-ability: 7
Stadium Allure: 2
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 9

37. Will Smith - “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It” (Vol. 4)

Ouch, just barely cracking the double digits. Take that, Jaden’s dad.

Pump-up-ability: 6
Stadium Allure: 4
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 10

36. Republica - “Ready to Go” (Vol. 3)

This was the song that was playing in Vegas Vacation, so it’s a good song to get you pumped to dance on the side of the highway with your hick cousin while breaking out of the confines of your familial role as a daughter and sister and finding yourself spiritually, but not to play any sort of sport.

Pump-up-ability: 9
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 11

35. KC & The Sunshine Band - “Get Down Tonight” (Vol. 2)

Let’s be honest. Jock Jams were not created in the 70s. They were created in that glorious period in the mid-90s when In Living Color was our greatest television show. This is the song your mom hoped they’d play at the stadium.

Pump-up-ability: 3
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 11

34. Los Del Mar - “Macarena” (Vol. 2)

Obviously, this song did not stand the test of time. The clear one-hit wonder in a list of one-hit wonders. This is the song they play when they’re panning the camera on the crowd to make everyone look like a total asshole.

Pump-up-ability: 7
Stadium Allure: 4
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 11

33. Coolio - “1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin' New)” (Vol. 2)

This is actually not a bad song, it just didn’t work in a stadium. But when you waited for your parents to go away for a weekend to have a house party, this song was the shit.

Pump-up-ability: 8
Stadium Allure: 1
Marquee Music: 2
Final Score: 11

32. Salt-N-Pepa - “Push It” (Vol. 4)

Gratuitously sexual for a Jock Jam. (Though we ain't mad about it!)

Pump-up-ability: 6
Stadium Allure: 7
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 13

31. Rednex - “Cotton Eye Joe” (Vol. 3)

Well, it’s in stadiums, you’ve gotta give it that. But then again, so are bathroom blow jobs. Doesn’t make it right. The only person this song gets pumped up is that one poor bastard they make wear a straw hat and dance around like an asshole in the control booth.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 9
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 14

30. Chumbawamba - “Tubthumping” (Vol. 4)

Oh good, nothing like feeling even worse about your team being down several points than hearing this song again.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 2
Final Score: 15

29. Rob Base - “It Takes Two” (Vol. 1)

One of those classic 90s songs that no one knows the name of and has no discerning qualities to describe it by. This is the song that a kid with a lot of money (or possibly a blank check) in a 90s movie would hear when going into a store to buy a lot of stuff, possibly even the Jock Jams cassette.

Pump-up-ability: 9
Stadium Allure: 3
Marquee Music: 3
Final Score: 15

28. KC & The Sunshine Band - “That’s the Way” (Vol. 3)

God bless em, they really tried to make KC & The Sunshine Band a Jock Jam artist.

Pump-up-ability: 3
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 5
Final Score: 16

27. The Bucketheads - “The Bomb” (Vol. 2)

The Bucketheads’ name sounds like an indie band playing CMJ. A familiar beat that doesn’t do that much for your excitement levels.

Pump-up-ability: 6
Stadium Allure: 6
Marquee Music: 4
Final Score: 16

26. Tito Nieves - “I Like It Like That” (Vol. 2)

This is the song that’s playing in the hotel club/party room at an all-inclusive family resort.

Pump-up-ability: 9
Stadium Allure: 6
Marquee Music: 2
Final Score: 17

25. Blackstreet - “No Diggity” (Vol. 3)

Might the best actual song on Jock Jams. But it is the opposite of a Jock Jam.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 5
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 17

24. Black Box - “Everybody Everybody” (Vol. 2)

This was the song you’d walk down a runway to in a 90s fashion show.

Pump-up-ability: 5
Stadium Allure: 5
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 17

23. 2 Unlimited - “No Limit” (Vol. 2)

There were no limits in the song “No Limit” by 2 Unlimited, and it was unlimited. The only limit was this song’s staying power.

Pump-up-ability: 9
Stadium Allure: 5
Marquee Music: 4
Final Score: 18

22. Vengaboys - “We Like to Party” (Vol. 5)

If you’re a guy dressed as a 90-year-old man in a Six Flags commercial, this song will pump you up. Miraculously, this got played a lot as a scoring song, probably because of its giant horn noise and literally no other reason.

Pump-up-ability: 8
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 4
Final Score: 20

21. Quad City DJs - “Space Jam” (Vol. 4)

If it was good enough to pump up Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan, certainly, it’s good enough for you.

Pump-up-ability: 17
Stadium Allure: 3
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 20

20. Michael Buffer - “Let’s Get Ready to Rumble" (Vol. 1)

Even though it’s not a technically a song, we’ve gotta give props to the voice that introduced the very first Jock Jams, and thus kickstarted a legacy. Also, let’s take a minute to give it up for Michael Buffer, a man who said five words in a tuxedo and made a career out of it.

Pump-up-ability: 16
Stadium Allure: 4
Marquee Music: 0
Final Score: 20

19. Outhere Brothers - “Boom Boom Boom” (Vol. 2)

It’s got a decent call and response which gives it points. It’s the song that makes you go, “Yeah, OK, I remember this song. Sure, why not. Anyway, I’m gonna go get a hot dog, you guys want anything?”

Pump-up-ability: 12
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 21

18. K7 - “Come Baby Come” (Vol. 2)

The intro goes hard, which is pretty sweet. A great walkout song. Bonus points for the awkwardness of sitting next to your dad in an arena and hearing the sexual overtones of “come baby come.”

Pump-up-ability: 12
Stadium Allure: 2
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 21

17. EMF - “Unbelievable” (Vol. 2)

Let’s be honest about this song. It has seven good seconds in it. But you know what? Sometimes, that’s all you need from a Jock Jam.

Pump-up-ability: 13
Stadium Allure: 2
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 22

16. Snap! - “The Power” (Vol. 1)

Oh hell yeah. Love to have the power before the big game.

Pump-up-ability: 12
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 2
Final Score: 22

15. Quad City DJs - “C'Mon 'N Ride It (The Train)” (Vol. 3)

This song’s moment is over. But my god, what a moment.

Pump-up-ability: 14
Stadium Allure: 6
Marquee Music: 3
Final Score: 23

14. Reel 2 Reel - “I Like to Move It” (Vol. 2)

This man likes to move it and we’ll be damned if we’re going to sit here and have his dream of moving it discouraged.

Pump-up-ability: 16
Stadium Allure: 8
Marquee Music: 1
Final Score: 25

13. Technotronic - “Pump Up the Jam” (Vol. 1)

It’s got “pump” right there in the title. Surefire way to earn pump points.

Pump-up-ability: 13
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 3
Final Score: 26

12. Village People - “Macho Man” (Vol. 2)

Having recently listened to this song for the first time in, I don’t know, a decade, I was struck by how it is very different from every other song on this list. It is aggressively, unapologetically about the male form.

It’s historically inaccurate to say that “Macho Man”’s widespread acceptance, blasting in America’s stadiums as dads pumped their fists enthusiastically, was a landmark moment for the gay rights movement. It was, in fact, just another stadium song. But it was also a stadium song about how alluring the male body can be. The word “body” is said 52 times in a little over five minutes, by a man, talking about his own or other men’s, which, again, was and is a tremendous rarity in the Jock Jam lexicon.

In a way, this makes it the absolute perfect Jock Jam. Commercial sports are almost exclusively about watching very macho men perform very macho feats, sometimes clad in tights, others in tank tops, muscles oscillating between states flexing and rippling. All professional male sports has a healthy dose of homoeroticism, dating back to the Greek days when Olympics and marathons were competed in the nude, dongs flopping this way and that. Sports are gay, forever and always, and “Macho Man” helped us see that.

Pump-up-ability: 15
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 2
Final Score: 27

11. Village People - “YMCA” (Vol. 1)

This song will be played at stadiums until we have the Olympics on Mars. The Yankees play it at every game for chrissake.

Pump-up-ability: 15
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 2
Final Score: 27

10. Tag Team - “Whoomp! (There It Is)” (Vol. 1)

They should play this song literally after every single NBA dunk.

Pump-up-ability: 12
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 5
Final Score: 27

9. 2 Unlimited - “Tribal Dance” (Vol. 3)

2 Unlimited was on fire as far as stadium-friendly beats in the 90s went. Just unrivaled in their output.

Pump-up-ability: 12
Stadium Allure: 9
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 28

8. Montell Jordan - “This Is How We Do It” (Vol. 2)

Good call and response. Strong intro. We are getting into prime Jock Jam territory here.

Pump-up-ability: 17
Stadium Allure: 9
Marquee Music: 4
Final Score: 30

7. Naughty By Nature - “Hip Hop Hooray” (Vol. 1)

This song is such a paradox. On one hand, it has the hardest beat on this whole damn list, but on the other hand, “hip hop hooray!” is probably the silliest thing you can sing while trying to sound tough. It’s hard as fuck, too, but also your mom could sing the “Hey! Ho!” part.

Pump-up-ability: 17
Stadium Allure: 3
Marquee Music: 10
Final Score: 30

6. DJ Kool - “Let Me Clear My Throat” (Vol. 3)

Maybe the most energetic song of all time. A perfect 20 on pump-up-ability. This song could revive a coma patient. No one can be held responsible for their actions when this song comes on.

Pump-up-ability: 20
Stadium Allure: 9
Marquee Music: 3
Final Score: 32

5. Gary Glitter - “Rock and Roll Part 2” (Vol. 1)

They don’t play this in stadiums too much anymore since Gary Glitter was convicted for that whole, uh, child pornography thing. Which is a bummer (not just for the obvious, profoundly disturbing reason) but also because this is arguably the best song to hear after a goal, point, run, or touchdown. A stadium staple, or it was anyway. 35 points with an asterisk, its stats forever tainted.

Pump-up-ability: 15
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 10
Final Score: 35*

4. House of Pain - “Jump Around” (Vol. 4)

While this song sounds distinctly of its time, it still holds up like a motherfucker. The Happy Gilmore-climbing-the-golf-tournament-rankings montage alone immortalizes it.

Pump-up-ability: 19
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 36

3. 2 Unlimited - “Twilight Zone” (Vol. 1)

Hard to argue with the fact that this beat was the definitive Jock Jam sound.

Pump-up-ability: 19
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 7
Final Score: 36

2. C+C Music Factory - “Gonna Make You Sweat” (Vol. 1)

Better known as “Everybody Dance Now,” this song can be recognized immediately by a single note. And then you know. You know it’s time to dance now.

Pump-up-ability: 17
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 9
Final Score: 36

1. 2 Unlimited - “Get Ready 4 This” (Vol. 1)

We don’t know what 2 Unlimited was doing before the rise of Jock Jams. We don’t know where they’ve been since. They were like musical angels who briefly came down from the heavens to bestow upon us these perfect stadium jams. An unfuckwithable classic. You can taste the undercooked hot dogs and overpriced beer in every beat.

Pump-up-ability: 20
Stadium Allure: 10
Marquee Music: 8
Final Score: 38

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