Like many, I was sad to hear that Jens Voigt was finally retiring. The void left by Lance Armstrong left many looking for a cycling hero. For me that was a renegade who took pleasure in the break away, enjoyed making others suffer and enjoyed throwing the entire race into chaos. That guy was Jens Voigt. Not only was he a beast on the bike, but he was interesting and funny. ‘Shut up legs’ is a brilliant mantra! In retrospect, I should not have expected that this cycling showman would not retire quietly. Soon enough he announced his attempt at the hour record.
The hour is a simple record. Ride as far as possible in an hour. It is a hour of pain! Grueling. Former record holder Eddy Merckx, hour record holder for 12 years, known as the Cannibal, described it as the hardest ride he had ever done. The current record stands at 49.7km. For Voigt, only limited coaching will allowed during the ride. He will not be allowed to have a power meter, or a radio. It will just be him and his suffering for an hour that will last an eternity around a velodrome. He will be allowed one thing to help pass the long painful time… Music.
Today VeloNews published his playlist for the hour record attempt. With no fear of traffic, there is no reason for him not to plug in his headphones and ride. I would do the same. What did he choose? Are his musical choices good ones? Regardless, as a music lover I should take a few minutes to and analyze this playlist. The following is Jens Voigt’s hour playlist and my reaction:
- 1. REO Speedwagon, ‘Keep on Loving You‘ Isn’t that sweet?! I suppose it is good to be in a good mood, but this is not the music of a hard man who is about to suffer for an hour.
- 2. Brian Adams, ‘Summer of 69‘ Brian Adams?! Really Brian Adams? NO!
- 3. Journey, ‘Wheel in the Sky‘ Alright. I can appreciate the symbolism. I wonder if Jens released this playlist as a joke.
- 4. Air Supply, ‘Making Love Out of Nothing at All‘ Come on Jens! You are trying to crush a world record, not make sweet love to it down by the fire.
- 5. Metallica, ‘Turn the Page‘ I have some Metallica on my playlist too, but this is a song to be played at the end of a long night of drinking beer and karaoke.
Hour Record Attempt
- 6. Republica, ‘Ready to Go’ Okay this has the right rhythm. I also see the obvious symbology.
- 7. P.O.D. ‘Feel So Alive‘ Ouch! Pretty soon you will feel like you are dying!
- 8. Metallica, ‘One‘ This is a classic! I love this song, but I would not choose it due to its slow introduction.
- 9. AC/DC, ‘Hells Bells’ Another classic, but I am not sure about the slow intro.
- 10. AC/DC, ‘Highway to Hell‘ Jens is starting to make up for his warm up tunes, but speed it up a little.
- 11. Farmerboys, ‘Here Comes the Pain‘ Okay I admit I am not familiar with this song. Maybe I am not as hip as Jens. It does seem suitable angry. I am sure Jens will be angry at this point!
- 12. Ugly Kid Joe, ‘Goddamn Devil‘ Wow! Talk about a blast from the past. Listening to this I feel like an awkward teenager with a mullet again. Jens might have a mullet by the end of the hour if he listened to this song more than once.
- 13. AC/DC, ‘Thunderstruck‘ Yes! Perfect.
- 14. Black Sabbath, ‘Paranoid‘ Listening to Air Supply and Black Sabbath within such a short period may make your head explode. How does Jens do it?
- 15. Metallica, ‘Frayed Ends of Sanity‘ Can’t argue with this choice!
- 16. Europe, ‘Final Countdown‘ I can’t listen to this song without laughing. Jens are you sure this is not a joke playlist?
- 17. Metallica, ‘Nothing Else Matters‘ Listening to this song first on the cool down would be like hitting a brick wall.
- 18. Cranberries, ‘Zombie‘ Good song, more symbolism, blast from the past.
- 19. Kansas, ‘Dust in the Wind‘ Another classic, but I you are cooling down, not getting ready for a nap.
- 20. Air Supply, ‘All out of Love‘ Really? Again?! I think this is why Jensie has 6 kids!
- 21. Lita Ford/Ozzy Osbourne, ‘Close Your Eyes Forever‘ A classic, underrated song in my opinion. I am hoping celebrations will be in order not a nap.
Well, it could be worse! Be grateful that there is no David Hasselhoff on the list, because we all know that Germans love David Hasselhoff! So here I am picking on poor Jens. The question is question is what I would listen to if I were Jens Voigt. A better question is what I would listen to if I were to set my own hour record… A personal record which would undoubtedly be far less than 49.7 km. What would I listen to?
- 1. Gloria Gaynor. ‘I Will Survive‘ It will be hard. I have to have a good attitude and a sense of humor. This song is an anthem for the women’s movement and Cake covered it so it is good enough for me. It is actually a great song.
- 2. Tom Petty. ‘I Won’t Back Down‘ Taking a hint from Jens I choose to start in a good mood. This song makes me happy and is symbolic of the challenge ahead.
- 3. Cake. ‘You Turn the Screws‘ Obvious reference to revolutions and turning. Plus Cake is cool!
- 4. Tom Petty. ‘Runnin’ Down a Dream‘ If I think I am going to set the hour record, I must be dreaming!
- 5. The Red Hot Chili Peppers. ‘Higher Ground‘ Cover of the Stevie Wonder classic with a little extra oomph to start getting pumped up!
Hour Record Attempt
- 6. Survivor. ‘Eye of the Tiger‘ During my high school football career, Zach one of my teammates, would always crank ‘Eye of the Tiger’ before leaving the locker room for a game. The song was dated then, but to this day it is a motivational song for me.
- 7. Guns N’ Roses. ‘Welcome to the Jungle‘ Classic, angry plus we have that Tiger/Jungle thing going!
- 8. Rage Against the Machine. ‘Killing in the Name Of‘ Riding this hard for this long is an act of aggression. A little Rage helps set the mood for a long hour.
- 9. Johnny Cash. ‘Rusty Cage‘ This Soundgarden cover is somehow even harder when covered by the man in black!
- 10. Cake. ‘The Distance‘ Obvious symbolism here plus this song rocks don’t judge the band by their sugary spongy name. Obvious race, lap and speed references are perfect for the occasion.
- 11. Soundgarden. ‘Spoonman‘ A little local Seattle flavor for my ride. Fast and furious from beginning to end.
- 12. AC/DC. ‘Thunderstruck‘ Good enough for Jensie good enough for me!
- 13. Survivor. ‘Eye of the Tiger‘ It’s the fucking ‘Eye of the Tiger!’ I don’t need a reason to play it twice. You have a problem with that?
- 14. Metallica. ‘Master of Puppets‘ You are beginning to sense a pace to my selections? Fast and furious like how I ride. LOL Ok. Maybe not.
- 15. Rage Against the Machine. ‘Know Your Enemy‘ I am pushing hard and beginning to falter. I need something to get through to me. To help me pick up or keep the pace. Time to bury it.
- 16. Tool. ‘Sweat‘ This is the last push. Giving everything just to keep going. This song contains what I consider the best drum solo ever.
- 17. Pink Floyd. ‘Time‘ The alarm clocks at the beginning of this song could not be more obvious end of the suffering. Whether the record was set or not, I made it.
- 18. Sons of Science. ‘Motherfucking Bike‘ In case I became delirious this is a reminder of where I am and what I am doing.
- 19. Presidents of the United States of America. ‘Peaches‘ If I can keep food down odds are I am hungry and thirsty. Mmmm Peaches.
- 20. War. ‘Low Rider‘ Cause I said so!
- 21. Grateful Dead. ‘Truckin‘ It has only been an hour, but man what a strange trip it’s been. Somebody better have a beer for me when I get off this damn bike!
Well that is my list. I may not be faster than Jens Voigt, but I like to think I can throw together a playlist at least equal to his. Being German he is already at a disadvantage, because as we all know Germans love David Hasselhoff. To the two of you who read my blog… What do you think? Which playlist is better? What songs would you put on your playlist?
Good luck Jensie! I will be routing for you!