Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Info About NFL Primetime Title Song (1998-04, 2006-Present)

This NFL Primetime title theme isn't the first—it's actually the fifth—but it's the one most associated in people's minds as "The NFL Primetime Theme."  ESPN started using this theme for NFL Primetime in 1998, and it's been used every year since with the lone exception of the final year of classic Primetime in 2005.  It was also used for just about every other ESPN NFL show from the late-'90s to the early 2010s (thanks to simtek34 for reminding me of that).  The song isn't an ESPN original, though.  It's basically just a re-recording of Edd Kalehoff's "Monday Night Football MIKE Theme" that debuted, I believe, in the 1980s.  The Primetime version sounds less bright than the MNF one, and I think it's in a lower key.

I have no idea where to get an official clean cut of this NFL Primetime theme, but a youtube poster by the name of nirvanainstrumental has made an admirable attempt.  Not all of the talk-over dialogue has been removed, but this post of the song is much cleaner than just listening to a raw episode of the show.  Here's the post:  LINK

Here's the link to Kalehoff's MIKE theme:  LINK

As for what's coming up on this blog…  The next project will to be to post the new Unknown Songs from the current ESPN+ version of NFL Primetime.  Most of those tracks aren't up to par with the classic Primetime stuff, but they're still part of the pantheon.  Stay tuned!


  1. Do you know anything about the primetime intro during 90-91?
    (shown at the start of this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZmdJBj0sEk)

    1. (It was also used in '89)

      I'm guessing it was composed by John Colby since he was the music director at the time, but I don't know any specifics.