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The Champion (song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"The Champion"
Carrie Underwood & Ludacris - Champion.jpg
Single by Carrie Underwood featuring Ludacris
ReleasedJanuary 12, 2018 (2018-01-12)
LabelCapitol Nashville
Producer(s)Jim Jonsin
Carrie Underwood singles chronology
"The Fighter"
"The Champion"
"Cry Pretty"
Ludacris singles chronology
"The Champion"
"Quiero Saber"
Music video
"The Champion" on YouTube

"The Champion" is a song recorded by American country music singer Carrie Underwood, featuring rapper Ludacris. The song was released on January 12, 2018, and was recorded to serve as an opening theme for NBC Sports's television broadcast of Super Bowl LII. It was included as a bonus track on Underwood's sixth studio album Cry Pretty.[1]

The song entered at number 47 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States.[2]


The song's lyrics revolve around recovery from obstacles. The song was relevant to both Super Bowl LII and the 2018 Winter Olympics, which were both being broadcast by NBC in the United States; Underwood also performs the theme song for the network's Sunday Night Football.[3] Underwood stated that "the main focus was to celebrate athletes at the top of their game, but we also wanted the song to resonate with people in their everyday lives". The song was featured in the intro for NBC's Super Bowl LII broadcast; in the sequence, Carrie Underwood performed on a soundstage with a screen showing highlights from past Super Bowl games.[4][5][6]


The song is set in the key of G minor with a tempo of 90 beats per minute in common time. It follows a chord progression of Gm–B–F–D, and Underwood's vocals span from G3 to C5.[7]

Commercial performance

"The Champion" sold 61,000 units in its first week and debuted at number 47 on the Billboard Hot 100 becoming that week's Hot Shot Debut.[8] Following the video premiere of the song during the Super Bowl LII, it saw an increase in streaming—668,000 on-demand streams on February 5, a 110 percent rise compared to what it tallied on February 3.[9]

The song was certified Platinum by the RIAA on January 24, 2019.[10] As of May 14, 2018, the single has sold 314,000 copies in the United States.[11]

Music video

The official music video for the song was released on March 2, 2018.[12] The video, directed by Jimmy Lynch, shows a montage of different embodiments of "champions" encompassing range of athletes, students and soldiers alike. There's also strong references to female empowerment, with clips of shark attack survivor and surfer Bethany Hamilton appearing next to images of the Me Too movement. Underwood also appears in the video in various clips of her recording the song in the studio, clips from her tour, as well as on a running trail, and even in footage from her audition for American Idol.[13]

The video received three nominations at the 2018 CMT Music Awards for "Video of the Year", "Collaborative Video of the Year" and "Female Video of the Year", ultimately winning the last one and extending Underwood's record for most CMT Music Award wins.

Live performances

Underwood and Ludacris performed the song live for the first time at the 2018 Radio Disney Music Awards on June 23, 2018. The performance was accompanied by the West Los Angeles Children's Choir, who filtered through the audience and made their way to the stage towards the final chorus.[14]

Awards and nominations

CMT Music Awards

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2018 "The Champion" Video of the Year Nominated[15]
Female Video of the Year Won[15]
Collaborative Video of the Year Nominated[15]


Chart (2018) Peak
Canada Digital Songs (Billboard)[16] 13
US Billboard Hot 100[17] 47
US Country Airplay (Billboard)[18] 57


Region Certification Certified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[19] Platinum 1,000,000*

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone


  1. ^ "Carrie Underwood Reveals 'Cry Pretty' Track List". Billboard. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  2. ^ "Hot 100 Chart Moves: Carrie Underwood's 'The Champion,' Feat. Ludacris, Is a Winner". Billboard. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  3. ^ Norwin, Alyssa (February 4, 2018). "Carrie Underwood Debuts 'The Champion' Video Before Super Bowl: 1st Look At Her New Face?". Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  4. ^ "Carrie Underwood Kicks Off Super Bowl With Sexy 'Champion' Vid". Taste of Country.
  5. ^ "Carrie Underwood Shares Anthemic Super Bowl LII Opening Song 'The Champion' With Ludacris". Billboard. Retrieved February 14, 2018.
  6. ^ "See Carrie Underwood's Adrenalized 'The Champion' Super Bowl Video". Rolling Stone. Retrieved February 14, 2018.
  7. ^ "Carrie Underwood "The Champion" Sheet Music in G# Minor - Download & Print". Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  8. ^ "Music: Top 100 Songs - Billboard Hot 100 Chart".
  9. ^ Caulfield, Keith (February 7, 2018). "Justin Timberlake's Super Bowl Halftime Show Yields 45% Streaming Gain in U.S." Billboard. Retrieved February 10, 2018.
  10. ^ "Gold & Platinum". RIAA. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  11. ^ Bjorke, Matt (May 14, 2018). "Top 30 Digital Country Singles: May 14, 2018". Roughstock. Retrieved May 14, 2018.
  12. ^ Maher, Natalie (March 2, 2018). "Carrie Underwood and Ludacris' 'The Champion' Video: Watch Triumphant Visual". Billboard. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
  13. ^ Billboard (February 3, 2018). "Carrie Underwood and Ludacris' 'The Champion' Video: Watch Triumphant Visual". Billboard. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  14. ^ Houghton, Cillea. "Carrie Underwood, Ludacris Rock 2018 Radio Disney Awards [Watch]". Taste of Country. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  15. ^ a b c "Here Are All the Winners From the 2018 CMT Music Awards". Billboard. June 6, 2018. Retrieved February 13, 2019.
  16. ^ "Carrie Underwood Chart History (Hot Canadian Digital Song Sales)". Billboard. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
  17. ^ "Carrie Underwood Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  18. ^ "Carrie Underwood Chart History (Country Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  19. ^ "American single   certifications – Carrie Underwood – The Champion". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
This page was last edited on 9 June 2020, at 16:18
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