Monday Night Football‘s iconic anthem is returning this fall with a familiar name and some new faces.
Legendary country singer Hank Williams Jr. will welcome fans to ESPN’s weekly Monday primetime game by asking: “Are You Ready for Some Football?” It will be his 24th season on MNF and first since 2011.
Williams, who has garnered four Emmy awards (1991-1994) and national acclaim among legions of football fans, made his MNF debut during the 20th anniversary season on ABC in 1989.
Superstar duo Florida Georgia Line (Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley) and multi-platinum recording artist Jason Derulo are the new “rowdy friends” who will join Williams.
“Monday Night Football has the most famous anthem in sports and we wanted to make sure the new recording sounded as good as anything on the radio or streaming today,” said ESPN senior director of motion graphics Mike “Spike” Szykowny, who is leading the project. “The challenge was to create a new music track that captured the energy of Hank’s original, while showcasing the distinct new sounds of Jason Derulo and Florida Georgia Line.”
To accomplish this, Claude Mitchell and Kevin Wilson from the ESPN Music team enlisted more star power with acclaimed music producer Ricky Reed, a 2016 Grammy Award nominee for Producer of the Year. Ricky created a brand new arrangement, oversaw the recording sessions and mixed unique weekly versions of the new track.
Szykowny added: “Ricky captured amazing performances by Hank, Florida Georgia Line and Jason. The new song explodes with energy and will definitely get fans ‘ready for some football’ before our game kicks off each week.”
The new video was filmed on June 4th at Marathon Music Works in Nashville, and was co-directed by Chris Mantzaris and Lucas Nickerson, from ESPN’s Creative & Studio Direction team.
Fans can see it for the first time on Monday, Sept. 11 when MNF kicks off its 48th season with an ESPN doubleheader – New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings (6:55 p.m. ET) and Los Angeles Chargers at Denver Broncos (10:15 p.m.).