Why do we watch wrestling again? Is it for the action? Is it for the eye candy? Or maybe it's to see some heel cash in a briefcase to some of the most Awesome Music played in an arena (outside of concerts, of course).
See also Most Wonderful Sound, for when said Awesome Music begins with a certain cue.
Also note: Weblinks Are Not Examples.
Just to point out a bit of the obvious: Notice how long the WWE section is here? That's because WWE's in-house composer, Jim Johnston, is the Awesome Music Man.
With the exception of the less than stellar "If You Rock Like Me", Smackdown has had a very good number of great theme songs. From the simplistic original techno theme "Everybody On The Ground", famous for its incomprehensible lyrics, to Marilyn Manson's "The Beautiful People" (a previous Raw theme), the aggressively ruthless production piece "I Want It All"(V2, V1 instrumental, then V1. V2 Extended here.) during McMahon/Heyman eras and Drowning Pool's "Rise Up".
There's something about "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's theme that just plain screams, "You're about to get your ass kicked, and there ain't a thing you can do about it!"
It's the abrupt glass breaking at the beginning. There's just nothing sweeter than watching Rock/Mankind/whoever getting curb stomped by whoever when suddenly you hear basically somebody flinging a chair through a window as Stone Cold runs in to save the day. Really, what came after the glass could be almost anything (and sometimes was). It was so effective, WWE starting adding abrupt opening noises to most of their big stars (the car crash for Mick Foley, The Rock's louder "IF YOU SMEEEEELLLLLL...", Triple H has "Time to play the game!" followed by Lemmy'sEvil Laugh, The Big Show's "WEEEEEEEEEEELL..." the explosion for Kane) but Stone Cold's was always the one that best said "Oh, you are screwed now."
In the same vein, the version performed by Disturbed ("Glass Shatters") starting in 2001, is considered by many to be superior to the original variant of Austin's theme. One writer commented that you could give the song to Funaki, and he'd become a main-eventer overnight. It was just that awesome.
For more traditional awesomeness, The Undertaker's theme can't be topped. The nightmarish organ and bells evoke feelings of the night and death, similar to Chopin's Funeral March, or in a more modern sense, the 1986 musical The Phantom of the Opera.
His run as the more true to real life Bikertaker had a pair of awesome music tracks too. Sure, they weren't tolling bells... but you can't really beat heavy metal and motorcycles. And of course, Limp Bizkit's "Rollin'". Because of that, Fred Durst got to appear in two WWE games (Smackdown: Just Bring It for the PS2 and Raw for the Xbox).
The opening to Make You Pay: "Dead Man Walking". Though the whole song is a treat for the ears.
Kane's current entrance theme that evoke the same feeling as the Undertakers while adding a more mysterious element doesn't sound so bad at all.
How awesome is this one? Barack Obama used it for his first public speech after finally revealing his birth certificate, a not so subtle Take That at the most insane of the "birthers" and their supporters.
Ever since his injury (and return), people on Youtube have been giving him Alter Bridge's "Coming Home" as his "new" theme. It's suprisingly fitting for his character, and it's a shame he never got to actually use it.
Shawn Michaels' theme. Even after all this time, it's still one of the most recognizable and beloved themes in all of wrestling... even if Shawn himself admitted that he finds his singing is atrocious.
"Eat your heart out, girls! Hands off the merchandise!"
Taking it in a much different direction, Hillbilly Jim's theme is appropriately toe-tappin' fun.
If the pure awesome released when the WWF's odd "Countdown to the Millennium" campaign ended in this could be captured and bottled, it would solve world hunger. Or something. Subsequentremixes, as well as a cover by Sevendust, only up the awesomeness.
Nightmare Clown, Doink the Clown's theme. His face theme, "Entry of the Gladiators," is far less memorable (not so much the piece itself as its status as Doink's theme), but is now used on all of his appearances.
Though it's horrible what became of the man himself in his last hours, Chris Benoit's final theme is still pretty awesome.
Usually theme mashups for tag teams made up of two singles joined to together have mixed results. But when you gets Maylene and the Sons of Disaster to re-record it into a nice little medley, it sounds so much better.
WWE Divas as of late tend to not be as lucky in the music department, and a couple of themes in recent years have actually been recycled from one Diva to another. But a few notable exceptions include Melina, which was originally MNM's theme, Natalya, and Jillian.
Interesting thing about Cult of Personality. WWE just happened to have the rights for that song purchased from back when they used it for "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's Hall of Fame induction, and that song just happened to be the one Punk used during the "Summer of Punk" back at his ROH days.
Even more awesome is how it made it into WWE '12 despite only debuting in July.
The Usos finally dropped their Jimmy Hart version of Pimp My Ride and got their own theme in 2010. But of course, what really makes their entrance is the thumping drum beat intro, accompanied with the Polynesian Siva Tau war dance.
The Civil Twilight's "Letters from the Sky". So awesome that WWE used it in promos for huge matches involving top stars - TWICE. (The John Cena-Randy Orton Iron Man match in 2010 and most recently for Cena vs. Rock at Wrestlemania 29.)
Puerto Rican tag team Epico and Primo changed their entrance theme to this in 2013. Unabashedly Latin? Yes. All the more awesome for it? YES.
Goldberg's theme, "Invasion" — i.e. the most awesome piece of stock music ever. When they get Megadeth to do a new theme for a guy, and it's generally considered a step down from a cheap bit of production music... well, you know that cheap bit of production music is something special.
The song, sadly, belonged to the WWF (now WWE) who hold the copyright on it, despite the song supposedly being written by Jimmy Hart and, as we all know, performed by Derringer. Jimmy Hart helped write "American Made" for Hogan when he made the jump to WCW since they needed something to fit Hogan's then still pristine 'hero' image. It actually worked pretty well, all things considered. It was actually a reversal of fates for Hogan and Flair. When Flair had jumped to the WWF, he had to use a knock-off rendition of his classic theme. When Hogan made his way to WCW, he couldn't use Real American, and so he and Hart created what was essentially its Spiritual Successor.
WCW resisted the urge to give Psicosis generic Mexican sounding music and instead gave him thisKing Crimson inspired theme. Chalk up another reason that WCW should have given him a better push.
Gail Kim 's new theme since returning in 2011 as a dual champion Alpha Bitch heel knockout from hell, "Puppet on a String". The "DAH DAH DAH! DAH DAH DAH!" guitar crush combined with the ominous string accompaniment just says "You're about to be epically trounced." to any opponent, and considering her long title reign, that's usually the case.
Sting's most recent theme. The crowd goes nuts anytime this starts up.
MVP's new theme is strictly the bomb. Suspenseful intro, powerful sound, and arguably the best hip hop vocals of any pro wrestler. What's more, Dale Oliver had nothing to do with this one, it was all MVP.
While simple, Tomko's theme definitely set the tone for him coming out and kicking ass.
AFI's Miseria Cantare, CM Punk's Ring of Honor theme. Say what you will about ROHbots, there's nothing like having them smack the barricades in unison to the beat of the opening drum fill.
Dragon Gate's Genki Horiguchi's themes. His first was Digi Demonia, and the leitmotif from Digi Demonia was remixed during his first heel turn into GO TO HELL. After he turned back to Face, GO TO HELL was remixed into GO 2 HEAVEN.
The video game WWF Attitude included, as one of its stock themes, a title called "Crimson Grin". Let's put it this way. Every kid with a wrestling game with a CAW mode has made a bloodthirsty demonic heel to be Kane turned Up to Eleven... and in Attitude, it's a safe bet to say most of them used Crimson Grin as their theme. Actually, for an otherwise mediocre game, Attitude had a lot of great generic themes, although they tend to be hard to find even on Youtube...