Don't blame them for their radio friendly reggae lite legacy: the original Wailing Souls influenced Sublime.
"I rounded first never thought of the worst as I studied the shortstop's position/Then crack went my leg like the shell of an egg, someone call a decent physician/I'm no Pete Rose I can't pretend/Though my mind is quite flexible these brittle bones don't bend." - Jimmy Buffett, "I'm Growing Older But Not Up" (1980)
"If I think about baseball, I'll swing all night...yeah!" -Warrant, "Cherry Pie" (1990)
Jocks aren't musos. Not that the bullying meatheads versus nerdy music geeks stereotype isn't broadly inaccurate. But as demanding as these dual passions are, there's only room and time for one. Music is the most important thing in my life and has been since I was old enough to reach the turntable. Pro ballers, and punters aspiring to that lofty ambition, dedicate their lives to the game. Music and sports: all consuming.
So there's a lot of obvious selections and downright mediocrity - and a lot of bad hiphop - in the lineup when it comes to walk up music. But there's also a few intriguing surprise hits from left field. As we enter the all-star break, here's some examples of the latter from some teams that are still relevant at this crucial time.
Around these parts it's all Nationals - America's Team and MLB's newest - and Orioles. No respect to the Phillies who show disdain for fans with the highest beer prices in stadia this side of those stinky Sox (who also gouge the faithful on tickets and parking - bend over, Red Sox Nation).
*NATS - Jason Werth: Nirvana - "You Know You're Right" (January 1994); Sublime - "Pawn Shop" (1996)
Curiously, the former Phil chose a pair of trios whose iconic frontmen died months after recording these performances at their final sessions. The former equalled anything on the final album, 1993's In Utero. The latter was based on Wailing Souls' 1979 original, a major influence on the Long Beach ("the LBC") institution that single handedly invented the subgenre pop/hiphop reggae that thrives at Seacrets...for better or for worse.
Daniel Murphy: Dropkick Murphys - "Im Shippin Up To Boston" (2005)
Of course. An Irishman chooses his namesake Celtic punk band's most rousing anthem to take the plate. Whoda thunk? Then again, the entire catalogue from the Boston legends comprises rousing anthems. Almost enough to forgive them their famed Sox fandom. Almost.
Jonathan Papelbon: Metallica - "For Whom The Bell Tolls" (1984)
As in, it tolls for thee opposing batter.
*Os - Ryan Flaherty: Dropkick Murphys- "The Wild Rover" (2000)
More Irish heritage stuff as Paddy picks the oi punks' version of the standard more (in)famously versioned by The Pogues on their 1984 debut. Rather an odd choice as it's a drinking shanty, but fair enough for Flaherty.
Brad Brach: AC/DC- "Thunderstruck" (1989)/Zach Britton: AC/DC- "For Those About To Rock We Salute You" (1981)
You can't go wrong.
*INDIANS - Joba Chamberlain: Motley Crue- "Shout At The Devil" (1983)
I was never a Cleveland fan - team or city, dubious claim to fame being it's home to the clueless Rock Hall Of Fame, albeit they finally (!!) inducted Deep Purple and Cheap Trick this year. But this year they respected the fans by giving them their moneys worth on the field, playing .600, and in the stands, with the cheapest beer prices next to the Diamondbacks and the Angels.
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