“Seven Nation Army” Will Outlive Us All

Jul 10th, 2009 // 7 Comments

Last night’s outing to a particularly dispiriting baseball game was saved in part by a loud group of young men who took it upon themselves to serve as a sort of Greek chorus for the evening, singing the bulk of their increasingly despairing taunts. The one thing tying all their performances together? Most of their singing was to the tune of the guitar-not-bass riff from the White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army,” which proved to be a pretty malleable collection of notes, no matter what horrors were happening on the field. And then I came home to find that So You Think You Can Dance last night used the track as backing for the show’s big group dance routine. Hey, two’s a trend! Or at least a post. The clip of the dance number after the jump.

“Seven Nation Army” only made it to No. 76 on the Billboard Hot 100, but the slightly foreboding feel of that low-tuned guitar has helped make it a staple at soccer stadiums and other sports venues alike. And lest you think its status as a dance jam is anything new, I present to you a reworking of the song by Ibiza Voice that, unfortunately, switches out the guitar bit and gives Jack White’s vocals over to someone who can’t quite seem to stay in key, vocal-wise:

group 12s [Yahoo! Video via RS]


  1. Soccer fans here in Columbus chant Columbus Crew forward Alejandro Moreno’s name to the tune of “Seven Nation Army” too. Proof: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0sSrXackKs

  2. I’ve been to multiple soccer games (in different locales) that had people chanting “Seven Nation Army”, and it is always completely f*cking wonderful. In particular, I went to a great Chicago Fire game where my friend and I were sitting in the last two seats of the section next to the section of behind-the-goal superfans, who not just made the game incredibly fun, but did versions of “7NA” and the “Pac-Man” theme in “Yo”s.

    Honestly, I hope it lives on forever, like “We Will Rock You” and “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye”.

  3. “Seven Nation Army” only made it to No. 76 on the Billboard Hot 100

    Bad timing viz. Hot 100 rules (a la Britney): the chart was virtually all-airplay in 2003, and the iTunes Store had just launched. In a parallel universe where “7NA” came out in, say, 2005 or 2006, it likely would’ve sold well and made the Top 40, maybe even the Top 20.

    For example, “Blue Orchid,” which isn’t half as catchy but did have the benefit of coming out in 2005, just missed the Top 40 (No. 43). “7NA” had more airplay (No. 1 at Modern Rock) and likely would’ve sold better as a single, too.

  4. I really only watch SYTYCD for the music. And because my girlfriend loves every dancing show ever so I’m forced to watch it. I got all excited when they used Roisin’s “Ruby Blue” the other day!

  5. @kicking222: have you been to the new party deck at toyota park? my bf got discount tickets for the fire’s superliga game against san luis and as cheesy as the phrase “party deck” sounds, it was AWESOME – we were practically on the field! and obvs. free food and drink didn’t hurt. brilliant idea on the part of the front office, esp. since attendance tends to be so undeservedly crappy for much of the season.

  6. Here’s the deal with that Ibiza track: the vocals are awful for sure, but the track is out of tune with itself even without the vocals. The two combined makes it very unpleasant.

  7. After hearing this chant for a year across the different leagues in Europe, I wondered where it all started and if Jack knew. Thanks for solving the mystery Maura/Guardian.

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