"Spider-Man" is the theme song of the 1967 cartoon show Spider-Man, composed by Academy Award winner Paul Francis Webster and Robert "Bob" Harris. The song's opening lines, "Spider-Man, Spider-Man, does whatever a spider can," have become as synonymous with the Marvel Comics character as his costume. The original song was recorded at RCA Studios in Toronto (where the cartoon was also produced) featuring 12 CBC vocalists (members of the Billy Van Singers, and Laurie Bower Singers groups) who added to the musical backing track supplied by RCA Studios, New York. The singers were paid only for the session and have had no residuals from its use since then.
The 2002 Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 film adaptations have featured characters as buskers performing the song; Jayce Bartok and Elyse Dinh respectively. Both films also feature the song at the very end of the credits: the 2002 film featured the 1967 version, while the 2004 film featured a re-recording by Michael Bublé (see below). 2007's Spider-Man 3 also featured the song's melody during the scene where Spider-Man arrives at a big celebration.
"Spider-Man Theme" was later covered by Canadian crooner Michael Bublé, and included on his first independent album, BaBalu, released in 2001. The track was later chosen for inclusion in the film Spider-Man 2, and thus, was released as a single on July 26, 2004. It also appears on certain special editions of Bublé's self-titled debut album, Michael Bublé.
The original version of the track, included on BaBalu, features an introduction taken from the popular jazz tune "Sing, Sing, Sing", originally made famous by Benny Goodman. This version also features Bublé performing the original lyrics from the 1967 cartoon series of Spider-Man. Bublé premiered this version of the song live during the Ronald McDonald House Charities' The Concert for World Children's Day in Chicago on September 14, 2000. The concert was broadcast on ABC on November 14, 2000, and released on DVD in 2001.
Following the release of his major label self-titled debut album, Michael Bublé, Bublé later chose to re-record the song, with the help of producer and remixer Junkie XL, and include it on certain special versions of the album, issued in select countries, including Australia, Japan and China. Thus, the producers of the film Spider-Man 2 heard the re-recording, and asked for the track to be played during the end credits of the film. Due to its success, the record company decided to release the track as a single, making it available on July 26, 2004. This version features an extended introduction, in which a police siren sound effect is played in the background, but excludes the last lines of the cartoon's lyrics: "To him life is a great big bang up, Wherever there's a hang up, You'll find the Spider-Man".
In certain countries, the single was released as a double A-side with the album's previous single, "Sway", as it had only received a single release in Australia. Thus, all territories except Australia received the double A-side on July 26, 2004, while Australia received a separate release three months later on September 29, 2004. The remix was also later reissued as part of Michael's Crazy Love – Fan Edition package. The music video for the remix premiered on June 26, 2004. It was directed by Mike Danson, and features clips from the film Spider-Man 2, incercut with scenes of Michael performing the song in New York. The track peaked at #6 in Canada, #21 in Australia and #2 in Italy.
Aerosmith covered the song for the soundtrack of the 2002 film adaptation, albeit with altered lyrics. It should also be noted that Aerosmith lead guitarist Joe Perry performed a new theme song for the 1994 Spider-Man cartoon, playing the lead guitar track and speaking lyrics through a vocoder that loosely referenced the 1967 theme, specifically the line "Spider-Man, Spider-Man, radioactive Spider-Man" and references to "radioactive blood" (changed to "radioactive spider blood" for the 1994 theme). The guitar riff was also based on the melody of the original line "Spider-Man, Spider-Man".
In The Simpsons Movie, Homer Simpson is seen walking a pig on the ceiling singing "Spider-Pig, Spider-Pig. Does whatever a Spider-Pig does. Can he swing, from a web? [Pause] No he can't, he's a pig. Look ooooooouuuut! He is a Spider-Pig!" A choral version is in the closing credits, part of which appears in Homer's epiphany.