Microsoft and Rare’s Sea of Thieves recently entered a closed beta, giving players their first real taste at the upcoming pirate adventure. Some users encountered errors or other difficulty getting the closed beta set up, so Microsoft extended the beta by two days to help accommodate anyone plagued with the beta scurvy. Once everyone got into the game, the fun took over. Everyone is in the pirate mood.
While Sea of Thieves offers some nice sea shanties by way of the concertina and hurdy-gurdy, some folks may be looking for a little more to lighten the mood. Obviously, the optimal solution would be for your 4-man outfit to begin signing over voice chat, but when that's not an option, you need a killer playlist to get the party started.
Join Shacknews as we present the Top Ten Songs To Set Off Your Pirate Voyage!
Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)
This one is a no-brainer. This tune has accompanied the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at various Disney parks. When you think of pirate jams, this is the first that comes to mind.
The Beach Boys - Sloop John B
While it began life as a traditional folks song from the Bahamas, it was popularized by the Beach Boys in 1966 as the lead single from their album, Pet Sounds. The song tells the tale of a group on a small boat. This group, like a pack or pirates, spends a significant amount of time getting sloshed. Growing tired of the craziness, singers Brian Wilson and Mike Love sing that “This is the worst trip I’ve ever been on… Let me go home”. Knowing the Beach Boys, the word trip likely had double meaning. One being the voyage and the other clearly being all the acid the boys were dropping in the 60s.
Christopher Cross - Sailing
This hit single from Christopher Cross’ 1980 self-titled debut album was an international hit. It took home the Grammy for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Arrangement of the Year. This song was so big, it is credited with being the birth of yacht rock, also known as adult soft-rock.
Ween - Ocean Man
One of the two singles off of Ween’s 1997 album, The Mollusk, Ocean Man is pure pop fun. Well-known to younger audiences due to its inclusion in the 2004 Spongebob Squarepants movie, Ocean Man is loaded with sea-themed lyrics. It continues to be used in popular media and commercials to this day.
Billy Ocean - Caribbean Queen
While it does contain ‘Caribbean’ in the title, this hot number has nothing to do with pirates or the sea. I just love billy Ocean. If you have a problem with it, write something mean in the comments.
Queens of the Stone Age - I Sat by the Ocean
One of the singles from the Queens of the Stone Age’s 2013 album, ...Like Clockwork. It tells the story of someone who had a falling out with a significant other and chooses to drown their sorrows in the bottle in an attempt to forget it ever happened. The lyrics mention that the two were often like “passing ships in the night." The slide guitar intro on this one is a real hoot.
Weezer - Across the Sea
This alt-rock classic first appeared on Weezer’s sophomore album Pinkerton. It is about a girl who wrote to Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo from Japan while Cuomo was going through a bout of depression. In the song, Cuomo gripes that she is an ocean away from him and unable to offer him comfort. I would guess that more than a few pirates longed for their special lady friends (or whatever they considered their treasure) and felt crushed that the comfort was an entire ocean away.
The Beach Boys - Sail On, Sailor
Yep, more Beach Boys. From their 1973 album, Holland, Sail on, Sailor never quite hit the heights of their hits from the mid-60s heyday, but is a classic in its own right. The lyrics on this one are pretty self-explanatory.
Styx - Come Sail Away
One of the biggest hits of Styx’s career, Come Sail Away was a legitimate Billboard top ten smash. It helped propel Styx’s Grand Illusion to multi-platinum success. Listening to the lyrics, it would seem that our guide got a broken heart and has decided to take to the open seas to find freedom from the pain. The first half of the song is your typical ballad, but halfway through, the track gains momentum and ends is a big swell of your typical 70’s prog-rock jamming.
2 Live Crew - Too Much Booty in the Pants
No need to explain this one. Pirates love booty.
I hope this playlist puts the wind at your sails, mateys! You can pre-order Sea of Thieves for the Xbox One and PC from Amazon.
Chris Jarrard posted a new article, Sea of Thieves: Top Ten Songs To Set Off Your Pirate Voyage
Add this to the list of pirate songs and remove at least one of the beach boys songs.