Thursday, November 14, 2013

Fenway Playlist

I don’t know about you, but after the excitement of the World Series I can’t seem to get "Three Little Birds” out of my head. I’m still humming it to myself. I’m constantly looking for it on my ipod. It won’t go away. When I’m not humming that song, I cue up “Sandstorm” so I can remember what it was like to see Koji running towards the mound to close it out. Eventually I got tired of searching for those songs, and figured I should just put together a Fenway Playlist. That would make it easier. But, which songs to put on it?

Sure, I could just go online and get the complete list of Red Sox walk-up/entrance songs. But, that’s not really what I wanted. Some of the songs just weren’t memorable to me. Pedroia had a song. But, not only do I not know the name of it, I can’t even remember how it goes. Clearly it didn’t have an effect on me. Some songs I just don’t like. Johnny Gomes walks up to “Boys are Back.” I like that one line that plays when he walks up, but really dislike the rest of the song. Can’t imagine putting it on a playlist. Plus, there are other songs that are played at Fenway that aren’t associated with a player. Yes, like “Sweet Caroline” that would just need to be included. So, I went through my collection and came up with the following list of songs that I felt needed to be on the list.

“I’m Shipping Up to Boston” – Dropkick Murphys. Is there a better entrance song in the history of closers? Didn’t think so. The way it started slow and worked into a frenzy was just perfect. Even now, when it was used before playoff games to start the crowd off on the right foot, it’s fantastic. It was a no-brainer.

“Three little Birds” – Bob Marley. Did you ever imagine that you’d hear every person in Fenway scream as loud as they could, “Every little thing gonna be alright”? If that’s not symbolic of how far the Red Sox have come, I don’t know what is.

“Boys ‘Round Here” – Blake Shelton. This might be the only other walk-up song that I can remember distinctly. When I hear it, I can just picture Salty walking to the plate.

“Take Me Out To The Ballgame” – Boston Pops Orchestra. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard the Pops play this song live. I know I’ve been at Fenway a couple times when they’ve been there, but not sure if they ever played this one. But, it was as close to an organ rendition that I had.

“Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond. Whether you love the sing-along or hate it, this song needs to be on the playlist.

“Mogura no Uta” – Express. The fantastic entrance song for Junichi Tazawa. I can’t understand a word of it, but the beat just gets me ready to see something special. Hearing that song during the playoffs meant that a really good hitter was about to strike out.

“Sandstorm” – Darude. Hear this song? The Sox are about to win the game.

“Dirty Water” – The Standells. If you hear this song, the Red Sox just won. It means that you just had a pretty good few hours. Even when I’m not at Fenway, the Pavlov effect of hearing this song puts me in a good mood.

“Joy to the World” – Three Dog Night. I honestly don’t know if this song was played all the time at Fenway, or not. But, I do know it was played after the Sox clinched the World Championship. Something about being there with everyone else and belting out that song at the top of my lungs imprints that feeling on me.

“Livin’ On a Prayer” – Bon Jovi. Another song that may be unique to game six. But, after screaming that we were “Halfway there!” during the game, hearing this song always takes me back.

There are also some older songs that, while they might not still be played at the park, always bring me back.

“Kryptonite” – 3 Doors Down. The walk-up song for Jason Varitek was a constant at Fenway for years. I still expect to hear him being announced whenever I hear the song.

“Low Rider” – War. If this wasn’t the first entrance song, it’s definitely the first one that I remember. Those first few notes were all that were needed to know that Derek Lowe was on his way in to save the game. I always wondered if he picked this song, or if someone was just being clever.

“Okajima Oki-Doki” – Tatami. Corny. Obnoxious. Fantastic. I don’t know many middle relievers with a themes song written for them. But, if the idea of an entrance song is to get the crowd worked up, this one certainly does its job.

“AllStar” – Smashmouth. They performed this song live before the 1999 All-Star game. Whenever I hear the song, it’s still all I can think of. Pedro absolutely dominating the best the National League had to offer.

“Mambo No. 5” – Lou Bega. I’ve mentioned this song before. During the 1999 ALCS, they played this song. The Sox were making a game of it in the late innings, and Pedro made his way to the bullpen. As he reached the pen, they played this song. He took off his jacket, and danced along to this song as only Pedro could while he started to get loose. The Sox were trailing in the game, and the series, but while that song was playing, things were certainly looking up.

So, those are the songs that made my Fenway Playlist. They all take me right to Fenway whenever I hear them. What do you think?

Which songs would be on your playlist for Fenway (or whichever Park you call home)?


  1. I would add another Dropkicks song to the list. Tessie.

  2. I would, but...boy I hate that song!

  3. Hate Tessie? Ugh. A pox on you. Listened to it at least 10 times while enjoying victory scotch and cigar after Game 6.

    For an old-timey, campy, non-serious response, I'd go with the Carl Yastrzemski Song. My cousin played it nonstop in 1975. Haven't heard it since then but I can hear it like it was yesterday.

  4. Honestly, my main problem with Tessie is the whole "Maybe if we get someone to record Tessie, that will break the curse" reasoning behind making the song in the first place. Reeks of the "Maybe if we pull Babe Ruth's piano out of the lake, it will break the curse" garbage that just made us all look foolish. The amount of time I spent trying to convince myself to add it to the playlist shows how much I enjoyed singing along with it after game six. But, I just couldn't do it.

    Great call with the Yaz song. Haven't heard that one in a while.

  5. I always thought the "Maybe if we get someone to record Tessie, that will break the curse" was a way to sell records after the series because I never heard it mentioned before they won, only after. (admittedly I am on the other side of the country)

  6. Thought it was Werner/Lucchino...but it was apparently Steinberg's idea.

  7. Joy to the World is the third song in the Victory Trilogy. DW, Tessie, and JTTW are played in that order after every win going back to like '04 or '05. Then it cuts to organ music. (After a loss it goes straight to organ music, often "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow" or some other relevant sad song.) There was a time where JTTW would only play for one chorus before fading out. And I found a mention on my own blog of it not being played after a win in 2009 and I was shocked--but that is precedent for it occasionally not being played, assuming I wasn't on drugs that day.

  8. I knew it was a possibility they played it all the time. Wonder why I never noticed it was in the regular rotation. I must be Remy-like in the speed I use to leave the stadium.

    Or, are my ears bleeding so much from having to hear "Tessie" that I can't tell what's played after it?

  9. Centerfield. I mean when I hear that song, I wanna just go out and play!


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