Holding Out for a Hero
|"Holding Out for a Hero"|
|Single by Bonnie Tyler|
|from the album Footloose and Secret Dreams and Forbidden Fire|
|Released||13 April 1984|
|Format||CD single, 7", 12"|
|Length||5:50 (album version)
4:21 (single edit)
|Writer(s)||Jim Steinman, Dean Pitchford|
|Bonnie Tyler singles chronology|
"Holding Out for a Hero" is a song recorded by Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler for the soundtrack to the 1984 film Footloose, and later included on her 1986 album Secret Dreams and Forbidden Fire. It was written by Jim Steinman and Dean Pitchford. Initially, the song only just reached the Top 100 in the UK Singles Chart, but made it to number 2 the following year, and re-entered the charts again at number 69 in 1991. The song reached No. 1 on the Irish Singles Chart on 28 September 1985. It reached the top 40 in the United States.
The song's instrumental break was reused from an earlier song by Jim Steinman called "Stark Raving Love", which featured on Steinman's 1981 album Bad for Good.
Jim Steinman had been recruited to work on the Footloose soundtrack, for which he wrote "Holding Out for a Hero" with Dean Pitchford. Steinman suggested Tyler's name when he was approached about finding a singer to record the song. Tyler recorded the song at the Paramount Studios, and was shown the scene of the film where the song would feature.
Produced by Jeffrey Abelson, directed by Doug Dowdle, concept by Keith Williams, it was the second music-video (following Deniece Williams' "Let's Hear It For The Boy") that successfully promoted Footloose while having no movie footage in the video.
At the beginning of the music video, Bonnie Tyler escapes from a burning house; the video is set primarily in the vicinity of the burning house and on the edge of the Grand Canyon – interspersed with shots of angelic background singers dressed all in white. Evil cowboys dressed in black, carrying neon whips appear before Tyler, threatening her; a cowboy hero dressed in white, brandishing a revolver, appears on horseback and the evil cowboys flee on horseback, with the hero in pursuit. As the song fades out, the hero cowboy appears in front of Bonnie Tyler.
It was used as the opening theme for the Channel 4 American Football show in the 1980s.
Two recorded live performances of "Holding Out for a Hero" have been released on her live albums Bonnie Tyler Live (2007) and Live in Germany 1993 (2011). Video performances have also been released on Tyler's DVDs, Bonnie on Tour (2007) and the DVD edition of Live in Germany 1993.
- Michael Brecker – tenor saxophone
- Hiram Bullock – guitar
- Larry Fast – synthesizer
- Tom "Bones" Malone – trombone
- Jim Pugh – trombone
- Alan Rubin – trumpet
- John Philip Shenale – synthesizer
- Sterling Smith – drums, piano, synthesizer
- Lew Soloff – trumpet
- David Taylor – bass trombone
- Art Wood – drums
- Bonnie Tyler – vocal
- Rory Dodd – background vocal
- Holly Sherwood – background vocal
- Eric Troyer – background vocal
Since the original release in 1984, Tyler has re-recorded the song three times. Two versions were released under Stick Music, on her album Simply Believe (2004) and EP Bonnie Tyler (2005). She recorded the song again in 2011 on an EP entitled Total Eclipse of the Heart, released by Cleopatra Records.
The song is included as a playable track on Just Dance 2015.
- Elizabeth Daily recorded the song as the series theme song to the TV series Cover Up.
- Jennifer Saunders recorded the song for the 2004 film Shrek 2. It also featured on the associated soundtrack.
- Frou Frou also recorded the song for Shrek 2. It appeared during the film credits and the soundtrack.
- Joss Stone recorded the song as a bonus track for her 2004 album Mind Body & Soul
- Emery covered the song for the first Punk Goes 80's album in 2005
- Ella Mae Bowen recorded a version of the song on the 2011 remake of Footloose. It also appeared on the soundtrack.
- Becca Tobin and Melissa Benoist performed the song on Glee. It features in the episode "Dynamic Duets", and was released as a single.
- German darkwave project Sopor Aeternus & the Ensemble of Shadows recorded a cover for their 2011 album Have You Seen This Ghost?.
- German band, van Canto, released a cover version of the song at their 2014 studio album Dawn of the Brave.
- Nothing But Thieves cover the song for the trailer of Vikings: Series 2.
- Christina Grimmie covered the song for a commercial for the Humane Society of the United States in 2015.
- The song was used in commercials for Doritos in 2014 and for Heineken beer in 2016.
- Footloose [Film] (1984)
- Cover Up [TV Series] (1984)
- Days of Our Lives [TV Series] (1984)
- Alvin and the Chipmunks [TV Series] "Three Alarm Alvin" (September 28, 1985) and "Alvin's Not So Super Hero" (January 21, 1989)
- Short Circuit 2 1988
- Who's Harry Crumb? 1989
- Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman [TV Series] "Pilot" (September 12, 1993)
- Bandits 2001 (US #165, top soundtracks #15)
- Shrek 2 2004
- Cold Case [TV Series] Episode 22, Season 3 The River (May 7, 2006)
- Drawn Together [TV Series] "Spelling Applebees" (October 19, 2006)
- Nacho Libre 2006
- Smallville [TV Series] Episode 8, Season 9 Idol (November 13, 2009)
- Saints Row: The Third (November 15, 2011)
- Regular Show [TV Series] "Eggscellent" (February 27, 2012)
- Just Dance 2015 (October 21, 2014)
- Bennett and Ethan [Animated Webseries] "Waterpark" (The Pilot) (June 18, 2015)
Influence on popular culture
Around the world, Holding Out for a Hero has become considered a torch song. In the LGBT community, The Star Observer of Australia deemed the song a dearly-loved gay anthem. In the United States, the song has been performed by drag queens.
In 2001, the song served as the soundtrack to a lip-synch and dance routine by the late performance artist Tandi Iman Dupree and her dancing partner at the Miss Gay Black America pageant. Their dance performance to this song inspired characters on the hit television series Glee to recreate the dramatic entrance Dupree made at the 2001 pageant, including the playback of Holding Out for a Hero.
The song "Montage" from the film soundtrack of Team America: World Police samples the bass line and drum pattern of this song.
- The Magic of David Copperfield VI Floating Over the Grand Canyon 1984, David Copperfield & Bonnie Tyler
- Bonnie Tyler The Video 1986
- 50 Jahre Rock 2004
- Discomelodies and Rhythms in Russian 2005
Track listings and formats
- 1984 7" single
- "Holding Out for a Hero" – 4:22
- "Faster Than the Speed of Night" – 4:40
- 1984 12" single
- "Holding Out for a Hero" (Extended Remix) – 6:19
- "Holding Out for a Hero" (Instrumental) – 5:15
- "Faster Than the Speed of Night" – 4:40
- 1991 12"/CD single
- "Holding Out for a Hero" – 4:41
- "Faster Than the Speed of Night" – 4:40
- "Total Eclipse of the Heart" – 6:49
Charts and certifications
"Dancing in the Street" by David Bowie and Mick Jagger
|IRMA number-one single
28 September 1985
"Part-Time Lover" by Stevie Wonder
- Music video in Dailymotion.com
- "Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler". iTunes Store. Apple, Inc. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
- "Shrek 2 (Soundtrack from the Motion Picture) by Various Artists". iTunes Store. Apple, Inc. Retrieved 27 August 2014.
- "Footloose (Music from the Motion Picture) by Various Artists". iTunes Store. Apple, Inc. Retrieved 27 August 2014.
- "Holding Out for a Hero (Glee Cast Version) by Glee Cast". iTunes Store. Apple, Inc. Retrieved 27 August 2014.
- "Van Canto: 'Dawn Of The Brave' Album Preview". Blabbermouth.net. 16 January 2014. Retrieved 16 February 2014.
- Bond, Nick (October 22, 2008). "Holding Out for Bonnie". The Star Observer.
- "Bonnie Tyler – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Bonnie Tyler.
- "Officialcharts.de – Bonnie Tyler – Holding Out for a Hero". GfK Entertainment.
- "Austriancharts.at – Bonnie Tyler – Holding Out for a Hero" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
- Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 316. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
- "Charts.org.nz – Bonnie Tyler – Holding Out for a Hero". Top 40 Singles.
- "Italiancharts.com – Bonnie Tyler – Holding Out for a Hero". Top Digital Download.
- "Swedishcharts.com – Bonnie Tyler – Holding Out for a Hero". Singles Top 100.
- "Archive Chart: 1985-08-31" UK Singles Chart. Cite error: Invalid
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- "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 100. Retrieved December 7, 2015. Cite error: Invalid
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- "British single certifications – Bonnie Tyler – Holding Out for a Hero". British Phonographic Industry. Enter Holding Out for a Hero in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Silver in the field By Award. Click Search