'Bring It on Home to Me' - Sam Cooke
Though he struck out with his "pelvic sorcery" in the first Guardians of the Galaxy, Peter is still hung up on Gamora in the sequel. He considers their relationship the galactic equivalent to Cheers' Sam and Diane, thinking it's only a matter of time before this "unspoken thing between them" develops into something more. So during a quiet moment on Ego, Peter again tries romancing Gamora, playing the beautiful Sam Cooke song, 'Bring It on Home to Me.' In this case, it's a love song pure and simple, as Gunn explains: "In Quill's mind, it's about Quill and Gamora."
Peter strikes out again, and neither the song nor his Cheers reference gets him any closer to winning over Gamora. However, there is little doubt Gamora holds at least some affection for Peter, otherwise she wouldn't be so scared of losing him and the rest of her new family.
'Wham Bam Shang-A-Lang' - Silver
Initially, when this tune was first shared with Gunn he thought he was being tricked because he had never heard it before. "I wasn't sure if was a modern band doing a retro version of a song or if it was actually an old song." Well, it's absolutely a real 70s jam and it's the band Silver's (who?) one and only hit, 'Wham Bang Shang-A-Lang' (what?). It's a weird little ditty and it makes its cinematic debut as the Sovereign's fleet of drones track down the Guardians for the final time, confronting them just as they're about to attempt to destroy Ego's core. The moment is one of compounding factors where the Guardians' problems go from bad to worse, leaving them only one option -- do their "wham bam shang-a-lang and a sha-la-la-la thing."
'Father and Son' - Cat Stevens
Family is clearly a recurring theme in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, from Peter meeting Ego to Gamora and Nebula reconciling. But perhaps what proves most surprising is the slow realization that Peter wasn't as without a father growing up as he always thought. Once he meets his actual father and learns what he did with all of his other progeny, Peter puts it together that Yondu was saving him all those years ago by not delivering him to Ego. It may not have been a charmed childhood, but he survived and didn't become a Celestial battery fueling the destruction of the universe. Yondu was by no means a perfect father, but whose is? When it mattered most, Yondu was there for Peter, sacrificing himself in order to get Peter to safety.
No song on Awesome Mix Vol. 2 is more poignant than Cat Stevens' 'Father and Son,' filled with a sense of regret and loss. In the film, it plays over Peter's eulogy for Yondu (in which he so eloquently ties it all back to his dad really being like David Hasselhoff all along) and continues over the display of fireworks the assembled Ravagers set off as Yondu's ashes float out into space. The scene is sad, but beautiful with lyrics like, "Keeping all the things I knew inside" and "I know that I have to go away," mournfully paying tribute to Yondu's sacrifice.
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) release date: May 05, 2017