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UFC 108: Walk out music a breath of fresh air

UFC 108

Thaigo Silva taunts Rashad Evans during the third round of their light heavyweight fight at UFC 108 on Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Evans won a three-round unanimous decision over his Brazilian opponent to extend his record to 19-1-1. Launch slideshow »

UFC 108 - MGM Grand Garden Arena

Jim Miller celebrates his victory over Duane Ludwig during UFC 108 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Miller won by submission in the first round. Launch slideshow »

While there were some predictable tunes like Jim Miller's walk out to Credence Clearwater Revival's "Bad Moon Rising" and Gilbert Yvel's confident strut to AC/DC's "Thunderstruck," UFC 108 mostly was about the more unusual and creative songs, getting the new year off to a fresh start.

Rafaello Oliveira marched out to the rap song by Dorrough Music called "Ice Cream Paint Job." The song starts out with the singer announcing he's "rolling like a big shot, Chevy tuned up like a NASCAR pitstop," before he goes into a detailed description of how beautiful his car is, complete with a shout out to UFC fighter Kimbo Slice. Oliveira gets points for the use of a more outside-the-box rap song.

Mike Pyle spelled out the formula for a fighter's success with his choice of Fort Minor's song, "Remember the Name." The singer lists, "this is 10 percent luck, 20 percent skill / 15 percent concentrated power of will / 5 percent pleasure, 50 percent pain / and 100 percent reason to remember the name." Though Jake Ellenberger earned the W over Mike Pyle, given his pedigree and record, Pyle's name will not be so easily forgotten.

While Junior Dos Santos chose the overused Bill Conti's "Gonna Fly Now," better known as the Rocky theme song, he earned the right to compare himself to "The Italian Stallion" with a definitive win over Yvel. When you walk out to the song from Rocky you better bring your "A" game, and Dos Santos did that by dropping Yvel in the first round and earning the TKO with a flurry of punches.

Duane Ludwig chose an unlikely song for his entrance. The dance track "Push, Push" by Austrian pop singer Falco (the musician who is mostly known for his "Der Komissar" and "Rock Me Amadeus" hits from the '80s) turned out to be a fun choice. The danceable beats and retro vocal stylings of Falco's 1999 song made Ludwig's selection stand out, although his performance against Jim Miller didn't, as he was submitted in the first round.

As far as Eminem songs go in the Octagon, Sam Stout picked an appropriate one. The lyrics to Eminem's collaboration with Obie Trice and DMX, "Go to Sleep," sound like they were almost written for a fighter going into battle. The song opens with "I ain't gonna eat, I ain't gonna sleep / ain't gonna breathe, 'til I see, what I wanna see / and what I wanna see, is you go to sleep, in the dirt." While Stout probably didn't actually want to see his opponent buried in the dirt, the phrase "go to sleep" carries a lot of meaning in the world of MMA and served as a perfect battle cry. The expletive-laden song went on to further describe a man's desire to put his opponent to sleep and Stout backed up every line with his impressive unanimous decision win over formidable opponent Joe Lauzon.

The gritty acoustic guitar at the start of Dustin Hazelett's walk out choice echoed Johnny Cash, then a female voice broke out over the airwaves at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Emmylou Harris' "Wayfairing Stranger" was a surprising choice but seemed appropriate for the intense Hazelett, who chooses to let his jiu-jitsu skills speak for themselves, rather than trash talking opponents. The song was fitting given Hazelett's backstory. Bullied as a young man, he took to fighting as a way to silence the critics and prove his mettle.

His walk-out choice, with its religious overtones, showed his acceptance of the hard road ahead of him as a fighter, but it also exuded a quiet confidence. As Harris sang, "I know dark clouds will gather round me / I know my way is rough and steep / yet beauteous fields lie just before me / where God's redeemed their vigils keep," Hazelett entered the Octagon to take on Paul Daley. Though succumbing to Daley's knockout punches, Hazelett might just see this defeat as more "dark clouds" he knows he can find his way through.

Another unexpected female voice on the UFC 108 playlist was in the intro to Rashad Evans' choice, "Step into a World (Rapture's Delight)" by KRS-One. The introduction is sampled from Blondie's "Rapture," then the rap song breaks into an unusual high-pitched kazoo-like beat. The lyrics depict a confident rapper who knows his beats are the freshest, much like Rashad Evans is confident about his moves in the Octagon. The lyrics "Step into a world / where there's no one left / but the very best" leave little doubt that Evans thinks he is anything but the top of the heap. Despite a less-than-stellar third round, Evans managed to defeat Thiago Silva and get himself back on track in the light heavyweight division.

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