Last week marked 25 years since the release of Piledriver: The Wrestling Album II. While its predecessor, 1985's The Wrestling Album, was a product of the MTV-fueled Rock 'n' Wrestling connection that saw Cyndi Lauper and Hulk Hogan turn the WWF into a pop culture supernova, Piledriver looked to flush out its newer characters through both ten new songs and a specially-priced home video release. A quarter-century later, the album is a perfect storm of '80s excess and absurdity. With our 24-inch-pythons fully flexed, we at the Weekly look back at the five wackiest clips from Piledriver.
5. Koko B. Ware – “Piledriver”
We begin with the album's title track and first single, “Piledriver” as performed by “The Bird Man” Koko B. Ware. The song deals with how sometimes love feels soft, but other times it feels just like a piledriver. Prior to wrestling, Ware used to sing gospel music, and his vocals are surprisingly strong. The only thing stronger is the level of discomfort when watching the accompanying video, featuring the WWF's biggest names working at a construction site. Most notable here is how, upon later airings of the video, the clip of Hulk Hogan suggestively stuffing a sandwich into his mouth has been edited out.
4. Slick – “Jive Soul Bro”
Here's something that could never get made today! “The Doctor of Style” Slick was a manager who was relatively new to the Federation, but didn't have much for the fans to identify with, other than booing him for his dastardly clients. That is, until “Jive Soul Bro” gave him a change to flush out his character and show the world what being the Slickster was all about. If there's one thing missing from music videos today, it's the presence of big wheels and ghetto-blasters.
3. “Mean” Gene Okerlund & Rick Derringer – “Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo”
Rock legend Rick Derringer has written some of wrestling's most memorable tunes. From Hulk Hogan's “Real American” to Demolition's theme, his guitar revolutionized the way superstars walked out to the squared circle. Returning the favor is famed announcer “Mean” Gene Okerlund covering Derringer's breakout hit “Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo,” complete with a video that combines the best elements of Van Halen's “Hot For Teacher” with Troma's Class of Nuke 'Em High for a boot-full of '80s mayhem.
2. Strike Force & Robbie Dupree – “Girls in Cars”
Robbie Dupree kicked off the 80s with his romantic soft-rock hit “Steal Away,” so who better then to write an entrance theme for the high-flying tag team Strike Force? If you like your high-octane grappling action buried in the metaphor of pastel attired seagull-accented walks on the beach, then the opening track “Girls in Cars” is for you!
1. WWF Wrestlers – “If You Only Knew”
The album ends with the unforgettable posse cut “If You Only Knew.” Giving everyone from Randy Savage and Bobby Heenan to The Ultimate Warrior and Barry Horowitz a chance to harmonize, this synth-heavy earworm captured the fun togetherness that only wrestling in the '80s could summon.