Nearly 40 years after Star Wars debuted, the iconic film saga remains as popular as ever. The sci-fi space opera is a cultural phenomenon that captured the imaginations of multiple generations. With references deeply imbedded in today’s popular culture, it should come as no surprise that Star Wars has influenced some of your favourite rock stars. Take a look at these 13 rockers who happen to be die-hard Star Wars fans.
1. Beastie Boys
The song “Do It” features the lyrics “Like gravy on potatoes, Luke to Darth Vader/ I’m a souped-up sucker and I’ll see you all later.” Episode VII director JJ Abrams has actually confirmed that the new character Ello Asty from The Force Awakens is in fact a reference to the 1989 Beastie Boys album Hello Nasty.
2. Green Day
The band’s bassist, Mike Dirnt, has been known to say that he bases “most of his religious beliefs on Star Wars.” Amen.
“The Sounder” features the lyric “It’s like that when we write raps, we’re not from the Empire but we still strike back!”
4. Queens of the Stone Age
On their album The Split CD, there is an instrumental track called “These Aren’t the Droids You’re Looking For,” taking its title from one of the most quoted Star Wars quotes in the history of Star Wars quotes.
5. Red Hot Chili Peppers
Lyrics to their hit song “Californication” include “Space may be the final frontier but it’s made in a Hollywood basement” and “Alderaan’s not far away, it’s Californication.” It’s safe to say the admiration is reciprocal, the Chili Peppers have some die-hard fans in a galaxy far, far away.
Their latest album is literally called Star Wars. Frontman Jeff Tweedy has gone on record saying, “The album has nothing to do with Star Wars. It just makes me feel good. It makes me feel limitless and like there’s still possibilities and still surprise in the world, you know?” Nevertheless, you can’t have an album called Star Wars and not be featured on this list.
7. Jefferson Starship
The psychedelic rockers are featured in the 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special. Even though the master himself, George Lucas, stated that he wished he could smash every existing copy of the infamous boondoggle if he had “the time and a hammer,” the Star Wars Holiday Special remains a cult classic.
8. “Weird Al” Yankovic
The King of Song Parody scored a 1985 hit with “Yoda,” a tribute to the little, green Jedi Master set to the tune of the Kinks’ “Lola.” He also composed a hilarious tribute to the plot of Episode I: The Phantom Menace, in his song “The Saga Begins.”
9. and 10. Ozzy Osbourne and Rob Zombie
The Prince of Darkness former White Zombie frontman were invited to George Lucas’s Skywalker Ranch in 1999 for a preview of The Phantom Menace alongside a plethora of other stars. Now, if you’re not part of the Rebel Legion and have never heard of the Skywalker Ranch, let us tell you: It is a magical land and workplace of George Lucas and the pastoral home to Lucasfilm’s celebrated sound design and post-production facility, Skywalker Sound. How do we get an invite?
11. The Hold Steady
“The Swish” features some intriguing lyrics that name-drop several famous figures — including Patty Smyth (Scandal), Rick Danko (the Band), Steve Perry (Journey), and Robbie Robertson (the Band) — and finishes with a reference to the Tusken Raiders, the foraging nomads of the Tatooine desert.
12. Trey Anastasio
The frontman of American jam band Phish is often referred to by fans as a guitar Jedi. Check out this article that basically proves how he is one with the Force. Still not convinced? Watch him melt faces with this guitar solo.
12. Deep Purple
Don Airey, the band’s keyboardist, is known for regularly teasing excerpts from the famous John Williams score throughout his solos during live shows. Looking back, there was a suspicious amount of “smoke on the water” on Dagobah, Jedi Master Yoda’s refuge planet.
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