Guardians of the Galaxy’s Awesome Mixtapes

The third and final installment of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy arrives in theaters on May 5, 2023. Guardians of the Galaxy was first released in 2014 and is well known for its plot-driven soundtracks. The soundtrack albums feature the songs present on Peter Quill’s (played by Chris Pratt) mixtape in his Walkman in the film. Quill’s mixtape acts as a way for him to stay connected to the Earth, his home, and his family. In February 2014, director James Gunn revealed that the film would incorporate songs from the 1960s and 1970s, such as Blue Swede’s ‘Hooked on a Feeling.’ 

When speaking about making the second film in the Guardian’s franchise, writer and director James Gunn shared, “Originally people kept asking me, ‘Don’t you feel a lot of pressure to do the second movie?’ and I didn’t in general, but I did feel a little pressure for the soundtrack because so many people loved it and we went platinum and all that other stuff. But I feel like the soundtrack in the second one is better.” Gunn added that Fleetwood Mac’s ‘The Chain’ and ‘Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl)’ by Looking Glass were the two songs that were, “the most deeply embedded into the fibers of the second film.

By April 2017, Gunn felt the music for the third film would be different from what was used for the first two films’ soundtracks, Awesome Mix Vol. 1 and Vol. 2. In the third installment, the songs are not modern, and this time around, come from Quill’s Zune that he received at the end of the second film. The latest film opens with an acoustic version of ‘Creep’ by Radiohead, which Gunn explains, provided “a much different tone from the beginning than the other two films.” Although the songs featured in the third film are not considered modern, replacing Quill’s Walkman with the Zune added 3 decades of music that Gunn could now use. Rather than being constrained to the ’60s and ’70s music featured in the first 2 films, the Zune contained music ranging from the 1960s through the early 2000s. 

Tunefind shares the fan-favorite tracks from the Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy.

Throughout the franchise’s history, the songs featured in the film trailers have served as a preview for both the soundtracks and the movies themselves. The trailer tracks are some of the movie’s most popular songs on Tunefind. Check out the featured trailer songs from each movie below.

Hooked On a Feeling by Blue Swede
Spirit In the Sky by Norman Greenbaum
Cherry Bomb by The Runaways

Hooked On a Feeling by Blue Swede
Fox On The Run by Sweet
The Chain by Fleetwood Mac

In the Meantime by Spacehog
Since You Been Gone by Rainbow

Often times a movie score is composed after the bulk of filming has been completed. Hence why the process is usually referred to as scoring the film. In 2013, James Gunn announced that Tyler Bates would serve as composer for the first film. Gunn stated that Bates would write some of the score first so that he could film to the music, as opposed to scoring to the film. Bates would return as composer for the second installment in the franchise, and once again, completed large portions of the score prior to filming so that James Gunn could use the score on set. 

Grateful to be working with my favorite composer, Tyler Bates, on Guardians of the Galaxy. Unlike most films, Tyler writes huge chunks of the score first so that I can actually film to the music. During action scenes and huge dramatic moments we blare the score on set so that the cast, crew, and camera can move in harmony with the music. Music is often an afterthought in film, but never for us. And everything Tyler’s done so far has been amazing!” – James Gunn, Director of Guardians of the Galaxy

In October 2021, Gunn revealed that John Murphy would compose the third film’s score and had already recorded music to be played on set during filming. Murphy replaced Tyler Bates, however Bates’ theme from the first 2 films was referenced.

Fan Favorite Songs from Guardians of the Galaxy film franchise


Volume Three

Dog Days Are Over

by Florence + the Machine

Come and Get Your Love

by redbone

Creep (Acoustic)

by Radiohead

Do You Realize??

by The Flaming Lips

Koinu no Carnival (From “Minute Waltz”)

by Ehamic

Check out Tunefind for all the songs featured in the Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy.

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