Are you looking for a fight? Or at least to pretend you’re about to go into one (for whatever reason, lol). Sometimes the only path forward is to confront your opponent directly, in that spirit, here are 21 of the best fighting songs to listen to so you'll get pumped up before throwing down.
Song year: 1986
“Fight for Your Right” was the first single from the Beatles' debut album – and it was an instant smash, becoming the first rap album ever to reach the number one spot on the Billboard album chart.
The song features the Boys rapping over a rocking guitar riff and drum beat, with lyrics urging the listener to just say yes to drinking, smoking, and partying. Although it's definitely hilarious, it's also sure to get you pumped up and ready to fight.
Song year: 2015
A song that pumps you up before a fight doesn't necessarily need to be fast and angry. Rachel Platten's 2015 hit “Fight Song” is a slower, piano-heavy song that's perfect for pumping you up and making you feel determined to win.
The lyrics are an empowering anthem about overcoming adversity and never giving up. While it's maybe not the best choice to blast through a stadium as you enter a boxing match, it's great for listening to through headphones before you have to face a challenge, whether a literal fight or simply a situation where you need to stand up for yourself.
This song also made the list of the best songs about strength and bravery.
Song year: 2009
Whenever you're having one of those days where nothing goes right, and you're finally fed up enough to fight, this song will provide the fuel you need. It's a thrashing, rocking rap-rock hybrid with lyrics about, well, breaking stuff.
The song does hit a bit of a sour note in one way. It's fairly famous as the song Limp Bizkit played during the mayhem and destruction of Woodstock '99.
Song year: 2010
DJ Khaled is practically the personification of music that'll pump you up. His 2010 smash “All I Do Is Win” is a rousing anthem about success featuring appearances from Ludacris, Rick Ross, Snoop Dogg, and T-Pain.
“All I Do Is Win” has made a huge impact across pop culture. It's the anthem for many sports teams, including the Miami Hurricanes and the New York Knicks. Even Barack Obama used it as an entrance song during the 2013 White House Correspondents Dinner.
Song year: 2009
Eminem released this song on his fourth studio album, The Eminem Show. That's significant because his previous album, The Marshall Mathers LP, had generated a lot of controversies. “Say What You Say” is his direct response to a variety of critics.
It's a fast, aggressive, and spooky song with impressive feats of lyrical dexterity. Eminem and Dre fire shots at Jermaine Dupris and other enemies both in and out of the rap world. It will inspire you to take down your rivals, too.
Song year: 2009
While Christina might not be the first artist you think of when looking for a fight song, trust me when I say “Fighter” will get you pumped up. It's a fast-moving, energetic tune that has the singer belting out powerful lyrics about overcoming adversity.
On first listen, the lyrics might seem as if they're about a romantic relationship, but they're actually about Christina's abusive childhood and how it helped forge her into the strong person she is today.
Song year: 1997
Let's be honest: Every AC/DC song fits on this list. But of all the great options, I'm sticking with “TNT” as the song that's best for pumping you up before a fight. It's pure hard rock with simple, repetitive lyrics about dynamite and explosions.
“TNT” is from High Voltage, the band's second album, which was first released only in Australia. But a song like this proved too big for one continent, as the rest of the world discovered with the album's international release. (Note there are two versions: one with original singer Bon Scott and a live version with Brian Johnson.)
Song year: 2004
Another favorite frequently heard in stadiums and arenas worldwide, “Let's Get It Started” will get you revved up and raring to fight. It's a pulse-pounding hit by the Black Eyed Peas that also features legendary lyrics from LL Cool J, who knows a thing or two about songs for fighting.
Originally, the song lyrics and title were “Let's Get Retarded,” but after a (justified) public backlash, they changed the title and reworked the words, releasing it as their fourth single from their third album, Elephunk.
Song year: 2016
The second Lizzo track to reach number one on the Hot 100 chart in 2017, “Good as Hell” will encourage you to get out there and move mountains to reach your goals. While certainly not the most aggressive song about fighting on this list, it's easily one of the most inspiring.
“Good as Hell” has legs. It was originally released in 2016 as the first single for Lizzo's second album, where it was a modest hit. However, she then went on the Good as Hell Tour in 2017 and re-released the single in 2019, where it found a massive audience on the radio.
Song year: 2008
The original version of the song, performed by Card Douglas and released in 1974, was a huge hit at the height of the disco craze. It sold over 11 million records, making it one of the most successful singles in music history.
Unfortunately, the original lyrics, about “funky China men from funky Chinatown,” have aged pretty poorly, which is why I recommend the 2008 version from the movie Kung Fu Panda. Performed by CeeLo and Jack Black, this version features new, inspirational lyrics about using your mind and body as one.
Song year: 2009
Hailing from England, Florence + The Machine found fame worldwide thanks to their unique rock-soul hybrid sound and charismatic lead singer. The song is the first single from their 2009 debut, Lungs.
It's a rocking song about two people hitting, kicking, and attacking each other. While some have said the song glamorizes domestic violence, Florence clarified that the lyrics are meant as metaphors for harsh words.
Song year: 2003
50 Cent alternates between good-time party songs that get the whole club jumping to hardcore gangsta rap that will mentally prepare you for even the toughest fights. “What Up Gangsta” is loaded with bravado and confidence, as 50 describes in detail all the ways he handles his enemies.
The song is from his debut album, Get Rich or Die Tryin', released in 2003. Fans at the time were enthralled by 50's true-life story, where he'd survived getting shot nine times by a crack kingpin who didn't like his portrayal in one of 50's songs.
Song year: 2000
Busta is another artist who deserves more than one song on this list, but I'm going with “Break Ya Neck” as the best for a pre-fight pump-up. It's one of his most aggressive songs, with fast and furious lyrics that will incite you to break your opponent's neck (metaphorically, of course).
The song is from Busta's fifth album, Genesis, which Dr. Dre produced. If you're looking for the biggest pre-fight boost possible, check out the video, where you can watch Busta's legendary energy in action.
Song year: 2014
If you're looking for a high-energy song with more than a little vulgarity, check out “Fight Night” by Atlanta hip-hop trio Migos. It's crude, bold, and sure to get you ready to rumble.
Released in 2014, the song was the group's biggest hit until 2017's “Bad and Boujee.” “Fight Night” was also nominated for Best Club Banger at the 2014 BET Hip Hop Awards.
Song year: 1997
In any fight, it's not if you get knocked down, but whether or not you get back up again. Chumbawamba belts the point home with Tubthumper, their biggest commercial and critical success.
A notable tradition from their anarcho-punk roots, Tubthumper has a poppier, hip-hop sound that will pump you up and get you ready to take on the world. The lyrics refer to class conflicts in England. (A tubthumper is someone who stands on the street corner and complains about society.)
Song year: 2013
While Lil Jon is the main voice heard in the song, it's the powerful beats laid down by French producer DJ Snake that will really get you going. The lyrics to this fighting song are incredibly simple, consisting of little more than the title phrase repeated, but they get the job done. The song will inspire you to approach your fight with maximum intensity.
The song was released in 2013 as part of the soundtrack for Furious 7. An early version of the song had the title “Band the Underground” and featured an auto sample from rapper Redman.
Song year: 1992
As soon as you hear those familiar horns in the intro, you just know you're about to get pumped up. “Jump Around” is the most famous song from the Irish rap trio, a rip-roaring song about conquering your enemies and being the baddest dude around.
The sound was produced by DJ Muggs from Cypress Hill. He initially offered the song to B-Real and Ice Cube, who both passed. But House of Pain turned out to be the best possible artists for the song, as the music matched perfectly with their aggressive Irish rhymes.
Song year: 2001
Starting with a whisper, followed by a primal scream, “Bodies” by Drowning Pool is sure to get you ready to fight. It's the nu-metal band's signature song, inspired by lead singer Dave Williams' POV of the pit at their shows.
The song was a critical and commercial hit, appearing in many movies and TV shows. In 2001, it peaked at number six on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks. Easy to sing along to, this aggressive song will give you the fuel you need to drop your opponents.
Song year: 2004
“Bring ‘Em Out” is T.I.'s biggest hit and arguably introduced the rapper to a wider, more mainstream audience. In the song, T.I. is challenging his enemies to face him in the streets.
It's an incredibly popular song among sports teams, used for introductions for the Miami Heat, Los Angeles Rams, and others.
Song year: 2010
Kayne's such a polarizing public figure it's easy to forget he's responsible for more than a few genuine bangers, including “Power,” an abrasive and aggressive song where Kayne shreds his critics and proclaims his greatness.
Interestingly, “Power” is the first song Kayne wrote down before recording. For his first four albums, he kept all the lyrics entirely in his head.
Song year: 1991
With lyrics that'll make you call the cops, “Mama Said Knock You Out” is a classic song for getting pumped up before a fight or confrontation. The song is aggressive and confrontational, with a video featuring LL in boxing gear rapping into an announcer's mic.
The inspiration for the song is based on LL's real life. In the early 90s, he felt the rise of Gangsta Rap signaled the end of his career. He felt these younger, more hardcore rappers were overshadowing him, and expressed those fears to his grandmother, who promptly replied, “Oh baby, just knock them out!”
LL Cool J is also featured in our songs about California list for his 1987 hit “Going Back to Cali.”
Whether you're about to enter the ring for a boxing or MMA match, or you need to prepare for a less official type of fighting, the right music can help you get pumped up and give you an edge over your opponent. From rap to rock and more, use the list above to find the perfect songs about fighting.