10 Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Songs from ‘Cobra Kai’ That’ll Boost Your Confidence

After finishing Ralph Macchio’s book this past November, I started watching Cobra Kai, which is the sequel to the beloved 80s film franchise, The Karate Kid. However, I stopped halfway through season three, so that I could focus on the last month of my Disney College Program. Thankfully, this past Sunday, I had enough time to watch all of the episodes I missed, so that I would be prepared for Cobra Kai’s sixth and final season, which has yet to be released.

I immediately fell in love with Cobra Kai because of how relatable the characters were, the life lessons taught on the show, and the music. The freaking good old 80s hard rock music! It’s like going back in time to the decade that brought us Ratt, Poison, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, Cinderella, and so many others. Rock music, in general, has this vibe where you feel like you can do anything. That vibe was perfect for Cobra Kai because the show encourages viewers to find the confidence to follow their dreams, face their fears, and believe in themselves.

Just for fun, I’ve selected 10 hard rock/heavy metal tracks from the show that I believe will boost your confidence. This is not a top 10 list. Though I’ll be working my way up to number one, these songs are in no particular order. With all that said, let’s get on with the music!

10. “Back in Black” (1980) by AC/DC – Season 2, Episode 2 “Back in Black”

If you’ve never heard the opening riff to “Back in Black,” then you’ve been living under a rock! This song was used in almost every single car commercial you can possibly imagine. Malcolm and Angus Young wanted “Back in Black” to be a tribute to the late great Bon Scott, without all of the sappy nonsense. With Brian Johnson’s imaginative lyrics, the Young brothers delivered a hard rock classic that is still popular today as it was in 1980. In Cobra Kai’s second season, Miguel (Xolo Maridueña) and Johnny (William Zabka) are walking in slow motion to Johnny’s car with sunglasses on and the scene transitions to them bobbing their heads to the song in the car. 

9. “I Want it All” (1989) by Queen – Season 1, Episode 10 “Mercy”

I’m not a massive fan of Queen’s The Miracle (1989) album, but I love “I Want It All.” It’s got an energetic chorus that makes you want to fist pump in the air. According to UDiscoverMusic, Brian May’s second wife, actress Anita Dobson, would often say “I want it all, and I want it now!” And that’s how the song came to be. In Cobra Kai’s first season, the song plays during a montage of everyone getting ready for the All Valley Karate Tournament.

8. “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’” (1982) by Judas Priest – Season 4, Episode 1 “Let’s Begin”

The song “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’” deals with themes of determination and believing in yourself, according to Ultimate Classic Rock. It’s a fun driving song too! The article later quoted Halford saying “You could just imagine putting this [‘You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’’] on, getting in the car with the sun shining and then blasting down a freeway.” In Cobra Kai’s fourth season, the song plays during a training montage featuring the students of Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang.

7. “Two Heads Are Better Than One” (1989) by Power Tool/Nelson – Season 4, Episode 3 “Then Learn Fly”

When I took the time to finish the Cobra Kai series, “Two Heads Are Better Than One” immediately caught my attention. It had a good beat, I loved the scream at the beginning, and the chorus was insanely catchy! “Two Heads Are Better Than One,” written by the band Nelson, was featured in the 1989 film, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure. With their debut studio album still in the works, however, the record company prevented them from getting the credit that they deserved, according to Ultimate Classic Rock. In Cobra Kai’s fourth season, the song plays during a training montage and as a bonus, there are clips of Daniel (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny actually getting along.

6. “Nothin’ But a Good Time” (1988) by Poison – Season 1, Episode 1 “Ace Degenerate”

My WordPress friends told me that Cobra Kai uses a lot of 80s hard rock songs in the show and they weren’t kidding. Season one opens episode one with “Nothin’ But a Good Time” and what a way to kick off the series! It’s just a fun party song that makes you forget your troubles. So what if you don’t have enough money to pay rent, just enjoy life and do whatever it takes to get by!

5. “Kickstart My Heart” (1989) by Mötley Crüe – Season 3, Episode 2 “Nature vs. Nurture”

At Universal Studios Florida, there’s this roller coaster called “Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit,” where riders can select the song that plays while they’re on the coaster. Whenever I rode that coaster, I almost always chose “Kickstart My Heart” by Mötley Crüe. I think it fits “Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit” really well, especially when the coaster goes straight into the air at the beginning and builds anticipation for what’s to come next. Loudwire recalled that “Kickstart My Heart” was about Nikki Sixx being brought back to life by paramedics, after he was pronounced dead following a heroin overdose in the 80s.

4. “I Wanna Be Somebody” (1984) by W.A.S.P. – Season 3, Episode 7 “Obstáculos”

At the beginning of Cobra Kai’s season three, following his accident, Miguel felt that he’d never be able to walk again. But with Johnny’s help, he got back on his feet and regained his strength. Eventually, Miguel threw away both his wheelchair and crutches while walking in slow motion to “I Wanna Be Somebody.” The song title is a simple statement, yet, it’s so powerful and relatable. 

3. “Eye of the Tiger” (1982) by Survivor – Season 5, Episode 9 “Survivors”

According to American Songwriter, the origins of the song “Eye of the Tiger” started when Queen refused to let Sylvester Stallone use “Another One Bites the Dust” in Rocky III (1982). Stallone then turned to the band Survivor for a song, and the result was “Eye of the Tiger,” the article continued. Known for the big power chords mixed with the cymbal crashes at the beginning of the song, “Eye of the Tiger” has been used everywhere in pop culture, especially at boxing matches. One of my favorite scenes in Cobra Kai is when Johnny, Daniel, and Chozen (Yuji Okumoto) are drunkenly singing the song in the back of a limo during the show’s second to last episode of season five. 

2. “Switch 625” (1981) by Def Leppard – Season 4, Episode 10 “The Rise”

I went bananas when I heard “Switch 625” play at the end of Cobra Kai’s fourth season finale. First of all, Def Leppard is my favorite band ever. Second of all, I loved that Cobra Kai chose a song that’s not an obvious favorite among the band’s casual fans. I mean, they could’ve picked “Rock of Ages” or “Photograph,” but instead, they went with an instrumental written by the late great Steve Clark. “Switch 625” has a sick bass line and an infectious guitar riff, and it’s one of those songs where Def Leppard was still young and hungry.

1. “Runnin’ Wild” (2007) by Airbourne – Season 5, Episode 10 “Head of the Snake”

I was torn between two Airbourne songs for this post: “Back in the Game” and “Runnin’ Wild.” I went with the latter song because I loved the carefree and fast-paced energy of it. During Cobra Kai’s fifth season finale, “Runnin’ Wild” plays as Johnny regains his strength to take down Terry Silver’s (Thomas Ian Griffith) men. Play this song at the gym and you’ll feel brave enough to lift those weights you’ve been struggling with all week. It’s that kind of song!

There you have it, people! Those are 10 hard rock/heavy metal songs from Cobra Kai that’ll boost your confidence and make you feel like you’re on top of the world. You’ll be surprised at what a rocking song can do for a person!

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22 thoughts on “10 Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Songs from ‘Cobra Kai’ That’ll Boost Your Confidence

Add yours

  1. Awesome series although I am sure it’s reached its logical conclusion. I know one more season is in the works.

    I would add Twisted Sister to the list, probably because I have a soft spot for them.

    Also on a separate subject, a person I follow called Andrew McNeice who created and ran the original Melodic Rock website asked Richie on Twitter when are they going to make the announcement that he’s back in Jovi. Apparently it’s a done deal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am pumped for the upcoming season to be honest. I want to know what happens with Kreese, Kenny, and Johnny and Daniel’s new karate team/dojo.

      Yeah, “We’re Not Going to Take It” is a good one!

      Wait, what?!?! Richie is back in Bon Jovi?!?!


  2. Johnny Lawrence’s beverage of choice, Coors Banquet can definitely boost your confidence as well. Probably won’t improve your coordination in a fight though!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Funny enough, I was enjoying one when I wrote the comment. Also, I’m enjoying one while writing this comment. These things are tasty! I recommend them.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes. It’s been around since the 1870s. I don’t know if they sell it in Hawaii. It’s brewed exclusively with Colorado mountain water, so I don’t think they ship it off the mainland. I could be wrong. It used to be illegal even in some parts of the mainland east of a certain line because it was unpasteurized and would spoil without refrigeration (it doesn’t anymore). That’s actually the plot of the movie Smokey and the Bandit. They smuggle a truck full of Coors east across the country.

        Have you heard of Coors Light? It’s the more popular version over the last few decades, but Banquet is way better. William Zabka says Johnny drinks it on the show because Coors Banquet was featured in a lot of ’80s action movies.

        But yes, they’re real. They’re my favorite domestic lager. I’ve had many more than I’d care to admit over the years. Haha. Try one sometime.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Colorado mountain water, huh? That’s fascinating to know. I didn’t realize Coors was so popular that they made a movie about illegally transporting loads of Coors beer across the country.

        I’ve heard of Coors Light because my dad drinks it. I had no idea Coors Light and Coors Banquet were related, but that makes sense now as I’m typing this. The 80s action movies thing makes sense too, considering that Cobra Kai uses a lot of 80s music.

        Dang, I wish I tried Coors Banquet before I gave up drinking lol.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yep. Banquet’s the original, Light is the light version. Former presidents even used to smuggle Coors in their briefcases to take back to the White House. It was hot stuff for a while. If you ever take up drinking again, you know what to order first.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I like the can design too. It’s got a banana flavor because of the yeast they use. Let me know if you ever try one. Maybe make a Cobra Kai related post about it. I’m drinking another one as I type this…

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Have you ever heard of the Sylvester Stallone movie Cobra? It came out in 1986, and was definitely one of the reasons Johnny drinks Coors on the show. I mean, even the names are similar. Cobra, Cobra Kai. Stallone’s character drinks a Coors Banquet in the opening scene in the grocery store.

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Yeah, Stallone has inspired me to work out many times. I love that movie Cobra. It’s not traditionally good, but it’s a lot of fun.

        Liked by 1 person

      8. I just bought Rocky, so I’ll definitely check out that one for sure. I really want to check out the fourth one too because it played a huge part in Creed II, but Apollo’s death scene trips me out.

        Liked by 1 person

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