ESPN bringing Hank Williams Jr. back to Monday Night Football
“ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALLLLLLLLLL?!”
Get ready to hear that iconic song again this fall. Six years after ESPN fired country star Hank Williams, Jr. for his comments on President Barack Obama, they are bringing him back this season to headline Monday Night Football (MNF) with his song “All My Rowdy Friends Are Here on Monday Night.” (And, of course, liberal sportswriters are already whining about it.)
ESPN is bringing Hank Williams Jr. — and all his rowdy friends — back into the Monday Night Football fold, six years after the sports network parted ways with the brash country rocker following controversial remarks involving then-President Barack Obama.
Williams’ new version of “All My Rowdy Friends Are Here on Monday Night,” with his trademark opening: “Are you ready for some football?” will debut before a Sept. 11 game between the New Orleans Saints and the Minnesota Vikings.
“I think it’s a return to our past in that it’s such an iconic song associated with football,” said Stephanie Druley, ESPN’s senior vice president of events and studio production.
“It was the original,” Druley told The USA TODAY NETWORK-Tennessee. “It belongs to Monday Night Football. It really is about returning to what fans know. It’s a Monday night party and that’s what we’re all hoping to get back to.”
The music video, which will air during ESPN’s Monday Night Football each game week of the 2017 NFL season, was filmed in Nashville Sunday and includes two additional contemporary music artists to freshen the song’s presentation. The new acts will be named later this week and each artist will be featured in every Monday Night Football opening, the song lyrics being changed each game to reflect the competing football teams.
For Williams, returning to ESPN is an unexpected homecoming.
“I never said, ‘Are you ready for some football’ on stage one time the last five or six years, but I will now,” said the singer, seated in his dressing room during a break in filming the commercial. “I’m feeling at home and it’s a real good thing … It’s kind of like the Nashville Predators playing for the Stanley Cup, it’s like ‘Wow.’”
Williams first performed the song, based on his hit “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight” during the 20th anniversary season of Monday Night Football in 1989.