2000 – 2005
In the first part of this series I showcased several songs and most of them just name-dropped Green Lantern with a couple of notable exceptions. As we enter the 21st Century you can see the impact of the rise of superheroes in pop culture pretty clearly. Not only are there more songs in a shorter period of time that reference Green Lantern, but almost all of the songs are either about Green Lantern or include the character in a song about comic book heroes.
“Green Lantern: Hal Jordan” – J-Sin Starr – 2000
Jason Cox created the pseudonym J-Sin Starr and recorded a number of songs as a member of an Arizona band that called themselves Adam Black. Their first album, Three Million New Yorkers Died and You Weren’t One of Them, was released in 2000 and included a track about Hal Jordan. Opening with the theme to the 1967 Filmation cartoon, “Green Lantern: Hal Jordan” makes references to Carol Ferris and uses the Green Lantern Oath really effectively as the chorus throughout the track. Cox also makes use of Hal reciting the oath from the same Filmation cartoons in the closing of the song, wrapping up this neat little ode to Green Lantern.
“The Ballad of Aquaman” – The Social Bedders – 2002
The Social Bedders is a group that I struggled greatly to find information about – in fact I couldn’t find anything out about them nor could I find their music available anywhere for purchase. In fact the only thing I could find on their song about Aquaman was the YouTube video below made by somebody apparently not associated with the band. The song at first seems to be poking fun at Aquaman, but overall it talks about what he brings to the table. There are references to other DC Comics characters and what they can do, with the line about GL being “Green Lantern’s got a glowing ring”.
“That’s Life” (Parody) – Dominic Nunziato – 2002
In 2002 Dominic Nunziato was an Editorial Cartoonist at the Queens Tribune/Press of South East Queens in New York. He also ran a website called spoil-sports.com which hosted sports cartoons and stories, but he also spread out into animated parodies. On Halloween of that year Nunziato released a parody of the Frank Sinatra classic “That’s Life” but with ‘ole blue eyes replaced by ‘ole green ring. Nunziato partnered with the now-defunct Emerald Dawn website on the song, which features Hal Jordan, backed by Jade and Katma Tui, singing about rolling with the punches through all of the makeovers he’s been through over the years. Because of the fan involvement, there are a lot of familiar names mentioned throughout the parody, ending with Hal’s sacrifice during Final Night and his time as The Spectre. Nunziato created a flash animation to go along with the song, and since it hasn’t been converted to YouTube yet it might be tricky to watch depending on your browser’s settings. I did grab a screenshot which you can see on the right, but you can view the video, as well as other parodies that Dominic made on the superhero page on his website.
“Sector 2814” – The Roy Clark Method – 2002
2002 was a popular year for Green Lantern songs, and the third song for this year comes from The Roy Clark Method, a now-defunct band from Macon, Georgia. Their first CD, Mild Mannered Supermen, was recorded in a house that had become infected with millipedes, leading to the band branding the house as “Millipede Studios”. The CD’s seventh track was titled “Sector 2814”, a song which is told from Hal’s point of view about his ring talking to him and saying that, “Hal, what have done with your life? People around you keep dying – use your will to right the wrongs and don’t make us wait for too long.” This kind of seems to be a song that is talking about Hal during “Emerald Twilight” but it could be more generic than that. The CD is out of print and the song isn’t available anywhere digitally as far as I can tell, but there is a video on YouTube for it which you can see.
“Green Lantern” – Blue Harvest / Simple Frustration – 2001/2004
The origins of this particular song is kind of interesting. The song was originally recorded by a group called Blue Harvest on their 2001 CD, Rub the Slave. You can hear the song here on YouTube and it almost has an unfinished quality about it, but the singer’s voice is very clear as she gives a history lesson on all the ring bearers from Alan Scott through Kyle Rayner. The group disappeared, but the song showed up again on Simple Frustration’s self-titled debut CD in 2004. The song definitely sounds more finished and a bit shorter due to the removal of a prolonged outro, but the vocals aren’t quite as clear as the Blue Harvest version. The vocals are the connecting factor as the lead singer is the same for both bands which originated in Chicago. The lead singer is Diahanna Davidson, who is these days making music in a band called Bad With People in addition to doing acting work. I don’t know if the bands changed names or whether Davidson owned the track and took it with her from one band to the next but “Green Lantern” is one of a couple of tracks that appear on both CDs. You can hear the Simple Frustration version below.
“Green Lantern” – Life of Pi – 2005
Stephen Hammill formed the group Life of Pi in Tampa Bay, Florida in 2003; a name inspired by the book of the same title. In 2005 they released their 2nd CD, Pyrrhic Victory, which included tracks titled “Chuck Yeager”, “See You, Space Cowboy”, and “Green Lantern”. The Green Lantern track is pretty cool, however it’s almost an instrumental with only a small section that has lyrics The lyrics are hard to make out, but the cadence and some of the words line up with the Green Lantern oath. The song is on YouTube and as of the time of this writing Hammill has the song posted on his website as a free download.
Next week I’ll conclude the series with all the Green Lantern songs from 2009 to today.