Perhaps no movie since the last Quentin Tarantino film has used familiar music as effectively to cue emotions as Guardians of The Galaxy. Starting with the trailers, director James Gunn picked out 70s music that has both nostalgic schlock value and hooks as big and irresistible as the universe. The result is music that grounds us in an unfamiliar world, bringing us right into Peter Quinn’s mind-set as ia dramatic link to his earth heritage.

And there’s even dancing and Footloose as the best story. I’d almost call Guardians a musical, in fact. It was probably my favorite part of the movie. And you know that scene at the end, that even bought a tear to my eye,

The official Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack includes Tyler Bates’ stirring if typical score instead of the 70s classics. However, Hollywood Records has a playlist on Spotify that has the whole Awesome Mix Vol. 1:

I dunno if this is 100% legit or not, but who cares. Fire it up and get ready to rob some space orbs.


  1. I can’t understand why everyone doesn’t realize this is the lamest soundtrack ever, with songs chosen for their comedy value! Other than the Bowie and Blackhearts tunes, we would groan and turn these pop hits off when they came on the radio.

  2. Gary, taht is indeed he message of Guardians of the Galaxy: that things that are horrible may still be wonderful. Or something like that. Is there a soul reading this who has not cried him or herself to sleep listening to “I’m Not In Love”?

    I predict that Awesome Mix Vol 2 will include “No Matter What” by Badfinger. Bet on it.

    I also predict “Get Down Tonight” by KC and the Sunshine Band and “Alone Again Naturally” by Gilbert O’Sullivan, although that might be a little too on the nose since it explicitly mentions the mothers death.

  3. buy the soundtrack? i already have every single tune in my collection. groan and turn off the radio when these songs come on? just the opposite. keep ’em on and turn them up.! lamest soundtrack ever? while probably not the greatest soundtrack of all time , it’s pretty damn cool.

  4. Okay… it’s not ferrous oxide on plastic tape, but it’s pretty close:

    Product Details
    Release Date: 7/29/2014
    Label: Hollywood Records
    UPC: 050087310851
    Catalog Number: 002054602

    The CD is available. 12 songs, but a CD-ROM track.
    Currently #2 at .

    Which song was on “Awesome Mix Tape Vol. 2”?
    For cosplayers out there, that is a late model Sony Walkman TPS-L2, which is the original Walkman from 1979. The original cassette player was not called “Walkman”. If you find one stamped “stereo”, BUY IT! The headphones are model MDR-3L2.

  5. I have a hard time believing the Bowie and Runaways songs were selected by the same person who picked the Top 10 pop schlock that rounds out the “mix tape.” But it’s all fun to listen to!

    “I also predict “Get Down Tonight” by KC and the Sunshine Band …”

    Why not? WATCHMEN already used “I’m Your Boogie Man.” And instead of “Alone Again, Naturally,” they could use Eric Carmen’s “All By Myself.”

  6. Gary, you couldn’t be more wrong. You’d groan and turn off “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5, seriously? A song that helped launched one of the greatest careers in pop music? Meanwhile, nearly every other song on the soundtrack is exemplary (NOT “lame”) ’70s AM pop-rock (though I wouldn’t have missed Rupert Holmes’ “Pina Colada Song”).

    Hoping “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” makes Mix 2!

  7. It would be hard to beat Sofia Coppola’s use of ’70s music as communication in THE VIRGIN SUICIDES, some 15 years ago:

  8. Ch-ch-ch-ch CHERRY BOMB! That was by the Runaways(with Joan Jett on lead vocals). It was so fun to hear that song that I missed some dialog. The sound track was a lot of fun and remember, his mom put the tape together so they were her choices. Having said that, it’s cool that she was into the Runaways. The Bowie tune was a cool touch too.

    Great casting, and just a fun movie all around.

    Gary, sorry you didnt like the movie. Maybe fun is just not your thing?

  9. Technically, “I want you back” isn’t a classic because it is very much a CURRENT song. That song is still played in clubs TODAY. And NOBODY rolls their eyes on the dance floor when it is played.

  10. I was really enjoying the movie at the time, but I’m under the impression that Starlord put the Awesome Mix Vol. 2 on at the end of the film, which included “I Want You Back”? The significance being he’s moving on from his mother’s death.

  11. Eh. Using familiar/beloved songs to score cheap emotional reaction (rather than writing a compelling script) is a tired enough cliche when done once. That Gunn relentlessly pulled this trick out just made me want to leave the theater. This movie was a fast-moving effects job with really bad storytelling, top to bottom.

  12. I’ll be the first to admit my choice of music is considered by most as cheesey, rather than cool. Usually upbeat uplifting songs of the 70’s and ’80’s as well as a lot of mowtown. Yep most of my taste in music I keep to myself, in an attempt to prolong the chance that I may still be considered cool.
    Yet when the tunes started weaving themselves nostalgically through this futuristic flick, I slumped in my seat hiding my guilty pleasure at some of my personal favourites being juxtaposed from the 70’s into the Sci-FI future setting. At first I thought these songs were played tongue in cheek. But then I realised, “This works, this REALLY works!” Sure it could be criticised for being emotionally manipulative to the audience, but what soundtrack isn’t?!?
    So it turns out that although I love cheesey music, not all of it is cheap nasty cheddar, but some like Awesome Mix Vol.1 is quality vintage cheese from the cellar that is appreciated by a wider audience than I ever expected! Well done Guardians of the Classics!!!

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