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Sunday, September 21, 2021

In an attempt to force synergy between the normally mutually-exclusive spheres of team sports and popular music, The Spin Blog ponders why football doesn’t have a signature song.

For starters, there’s no football equivalent to Paul Simon’s immortal Joe DiMaggio shout-out on “Mrs. Robinson.” Football doesn’t have its own version of John Fogerty’s, “Centerfield” or, to dig really deep, Warren Zevon’s “Bill Lee” (named after the former Red Sox pitcher). “The Super Bowl Shuffle” didn’t exactly set anyone’s ears on fire…

Basketball too has a close relationship with music. Vats of ink have been spilled about the supposed relationship between jazz and hoops, but I’m more down with oddball intersections like Cheech and Chong’s funny, funky ’70s jam, “Basketball Jones,” or the fact that Pearl Jam was originally called Mookie Blaylock (the name of a former guard for the New Jersey Nets). Albums from superstar players like Shaq, Allen Iverson, and Ron Artest are just the most obvious links between rap and roundball.

Football? The gridiron’s de facto theme song is Hank Williams Jr.’s “Are You Ready For Some Football?” All respect to Bocephus, but that song is not exactly the stuff of the legends. And sure, the Super Bowl halftime show might be the biggest musical event of the year, but that massive ad sales pageant is more about math than music. If the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest drew 100 millions viewers, U2 and Justin Timberlake would’ve played that too.

I’ll let more attuned minds work out why pigskin and pop doesn’t mix better. I’m more concerned with completing the Big Four roundup of major-league sports and their music by marking down hockey’s musical contribution: Stompin’ Tom Connors‘ toe-tapping anthem, “The Hockey Song”:

Hello out there
We’re on the air
It’s hockey night tonight
Tension grows
The whistle blows
And the puck goes down the ice
The goalie jumps
And the players bump
And the fans all go insane
Someone roars
“Bobby scores!”
At the good ol’ hockey game

Oh the good ol’ hockey game
Is the best game you can name
And the best game you can name
Is the good ol’ hockey game

(Second period…)

Where players dance
With skates a’flash
The home team trails behind
But they grab the puck
And go bursting up
And they’re down across the line
They storm the crease
Like bumblebees
They travel like a burning flame
You see them slide
The puck inside
It’s a one-one hockey game


(Third period… last game of the playoffs too)

Oh take me where
The hockey players
Faceoff down the rink
And the Stanley Cup
Is all filled up
For the chance to win the drink
Now the final flick
Of a hockey stick
And-a one gigantic scream
The puck is in!
The home team wins
The good ol’ hockey game


(That’s it! He shoots, he scores!)

It’s a little bit country and a little bit rock ‘n roll. Actually, it’s just about wholly country — and twangy, Canadian country at that. But it’s got Stompin’ Tom back in business, and provides hockey arena sound guys with sure-fire filler material. So it’s all good.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 09/21/2008 11:05:14 AM
Category: Baseball, Basketball, Football, Hockey, Pop Culture
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