After just two weeks of riding the newly redesigned track, professional riders in the 2013 Supercross series are already settling into the groove, literally.
For the past few years Feld Motorsports, producer of the multi-city motocross series, began elevating their use of rock from background music to an integral and indispensable part of the show.
After the crowd pours in, the house lights dimmed and the lasers fired up, the stars of the sport are announced each Saturday night one by one via video packages displayed on the stadium’s jumbo-tron. Upon the conclusion of each intro, a single spotlight reveals the rider to an adoring crowd. The entrance is punctuated by fireworks and a piece of hand-picked music that pushes the limits of Feld’s million-watt speaker system.
But who makes the musical selections that 45,000 fans sing along with each night?
“I work with the riders, getting input from them directly,” explains Luke Parmeter in an interview with Radio.com. As the head of film production for opening ceremonies, Parmeter is the creative force behind the event’s audio and video. Parmeter explains that he meets up with each of the riders one-on-one in order to sync up their musical requests. In other words, what song they want to be introduced by.
“Some riders don’t care, they say, ah just play whatever you want while others are very specific,” says Parmeter. “For the riders that don’t have a request, I’ll get with Dave Prater, the director of Supercross, to come up with music that fits their personality and will work good with crowds.”
At the January 5 season opener, riders such as Ryan Dungey surprised music fans by making his entrance to Imagine Dragons‘ “Radioactive.” “I did some filming with him earlier in the week and I asked him what song he’d like to come out to,” explained Parmeter. “He didn’t know at the time. But later on that day he sent me a text saying ‘Hey man, I think we should play Radioactive, I think it would be really cool.'”
“We switch it up a little throughout the year but some of the riders like Chad Reed, he’s from Australia, so he always comes out to comes out to AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck.” That’s kinda like his trademark. Kevin Windham, who traditionally comes out to country music, because he’s from Mississippi, switched it up this year. He’s coming out this year to “Jump Around” by House of Pain. So for him to go from country to that was pretty cool. I think the crowd really loved it.”
While many riders enter the field to classics such as Metallica‘s “Enter Sandman,” Guns n Roses‘ “Welcome to the Jungle,” and Motley Crue’s “Kickstart My Heart,” top names in the sport come out to current rock hits like Linkin Park’s “I’ll be Gone” and Imagine Dragon’s “Radioactive.”
According to Parmeter, the strangest musical request was made by Southern California Josh Hansen when he asked for Justin Bieber. The Feld team obliged, laughing the entire time.
Supercross tickets are available now via Ticketmaster.
2013 Season Schedule
|Angel Stadium||Anaheim, CA||January 19||Available|
|Overstock.com Stadium||Oakland, CA||January 26||Buy Tickets|
|Angels Stadium||Anaheim, CA||February 2||Buy Tickets|
|Qualcomm Stadium||San Diego, CA||February 9||Buy Tickets|
|Cowboys Stadium||Arlington, TX||February 16||Buy Tickets|
|Georgia Dome||Atlanta, GA||February 23||Buy Tickets|
|Edward Jones Dome||St.Louis, MO||March 2||Buy Tickets|
|Daytona Speedway||Daytona Bch, FL||March 9||Buy Tickets|
|Lucas Oil Stadium||Indianapolis, IN||March 16||Buy Tickets|
|Rogers Centre||Toronto, Canada||March 23||Buy Tickets|
|Reliant Stadium||Houston, TX||April 6||Buy Tickets|
|Metrodome||Minneapolis, MN||April 13||Buy Tickets|
|Century Link Field||Seattle, WA||April 20||Buy Tickets|
|Rice-Eccles Stadium||SLC, UT||April 27||Buy Tickets|
|Sam Boyd Stadium||Las Vegas, NV||May 4||Buy Tickets|
— Jay Tilles, Radio.com