American celebrity singer and actor, Will Smith, is in the cast with other top international music stars to perform at the opening ceremony of the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup, the world football governing body has announced.
Together with Nicky Jam and Era Istrefi, the entertainment legends will be performing the Official Song of the Mundial, “Live It Up” produced by DJ and songwriter, Diplo, at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 15 before kick off of the opening game.
Describing the concept as “part of another exciting collaboration” between it and Sony Music, FIFA revealed that the lyrics of the song will be released on Friday, May 25 on multiple streaming platforms for fans to get used to, while the official video is scheduled for release on June 7.
“Ahead of the final on 15 July, the music stars will warm up the 80,000 spectators at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium and around one billion people watching on TV just a few minutes before the two finalists come out on to the pitch,” FIFA Media announced.
“It’s an honour to be asked to perform at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. This global event brings people from all over the world together to cheer, laugh and experience magic. Collaborating with Nicky, Diplo and Era on this track represents harmony, eclectic flavours and genres coming together. At the end of the day, we just want to see the world dance”, said Smith, a world-renowned Grammy Award-winner.
“I’ve never made a song this international, so many stars have come together to make a strong vibe”, Diplo added.
“To record the Official Song for the FIFA World Cup is a lifetime achievement. Not many artists have the privilege of being able to say they’ve been part of this. I’m so proud and happy, I can say to my grandkids ‘I’ve made it’,” commented Nicky Jam, one of Latin music’s most iconic names and a Latin Grammy Award winner.
“Being part of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Official Song has been an incredible and exciting experience so far. Working alongside talented artists like Diplo, Will Smith and Nicky Jam, who I all have huge admiration for, has been amazing and so much fun. I’m a huge football fan too, so I can’t wait for the World Cup to begin,” noted rising pop sensation Era Istrefi.
The tradition of an Official Song dates back to the 1966 FIFA World Cup™ in England with a song for the first Official Mascot, “World Cup Willie”. Since then, the Official Music Programme and the Official Mascot have become a more and more significant component of the event, providing an excellent opportunity for more than just football fans to identify with the world’s biggest single-sport event.
“FIFA and Sony Music have enjoyed a successful cooperation on the Official Music Programme for years now. The synergy between football and music is striking, both stirring up fans’ emotions across the globe. This song – with a world -class line-up worthy of the greatest show on Earth – embodies the excitement, the celebration and the unity that people all over the world will share during the 2018 FIFA World Cup,” says Philippe Le Floc’h, FIFA Chief Commercial Officer.
“Sony Music has had a longstanding relationship with FIFA. When discussing the official music for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, the objective that both organisations agreed on was a great song supported by an all-star line-up,” added Afo Verde, Chairman & CEO of Sony Music Latin Iberia. “We are very excited that Will Smith, Nicky Jam, Diplo and Era Istrefi are part of the song and working hand in hand with FIFA and our artist community in providing the soundtrack for the biggest event in the world.”
Official Songs at recent FIFA World Cups™ have included “Un’estate italiana” by Edoardo Bennato and Gianna Nannini in 1990, “Gloryland” by Daryl Hall with Sounds of Blackness in 1994, and “La Copa de la Vida” by Ricky Martin in 1998. In 2002, the Official Song was “Boom” by Anastacia, while Vangelis’ vocal official anthem featured typical Korean and Japanese sonic elements. In 2006, “The Time of Our Lives” by the Il Divo quartet was a resounding success. Shakira’s “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” was the Official Song of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ in South Africa and, most recently, “We Are One (Ole Ola)” was the Official Song of the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ in Brazil.