Music and (My) Baseball

Today’s post comes from Barbara in Rivertown

Until this week, the last time I watched the World Series was October of 2006, with my dad during his last month on the planet. Dad had lived his whole life in Iowa. Before the Twins started up in 1961, and since Iowa had no major league team, he’d adopted the St. Louis Cardinals. Lo and behold, they made it to the World Series!

The hospice nurses gave him a Cardinals cap and some strings of red, white, and gold beads; he and Mom would put on the beads, I’d wear the hat, and we spent several cozy evenings in front of the tube, cheering the Cardinals on. Although the Cardinals were not at all favored to win, they managed to pull it out game after game. (It really did seem like they won the Series for my dad.) I don’t recall a great theme song, and although there seem to be some recent songs composed about the Cardinals,  the only music I’ve been able to find from the 2006 era is a Budweiser theme Here Comes the King.

Fast forward ten years. I don’t think I would have cared much who won the World Series this year if it weren’t for Steve Goodman’s love for the Cubs. Not only did he give us “The Dying Cub Fan’s Last Request”

that we would hear on The Late Great Morning Show, at each spring’s baseball opener. Turns out he also wrote the song they now sing in the stands – “G0 CUBS GO!” Check out this tribute to Steve Goodman from NBC’s Mike Leonard in September, 2008:

The lyrics to the chorus are:

Go Cubs Go

Go Cubs Go

Hey, Chicago, what do you say

The Cubs are gonna win today

 A 10/31/16 article about Goodman in the Jewish Journal, by Gabe Friedman explains:  “Goodman’s two Cubs songs were closely linked to each other. Dallas Green, who became the team’s general manager in the early 1980s, was said to have hated “A Dying Cub Fan’s Last Request” with a passion. It was rumored that Goodman made “Go Cubs Go,” which was commissioned by the local radio station WGN, as saccharine as possible as a light jab at Green. The song’s simple chorus caught on, and the tune is now played at Wrigley Field after every Cubs win there.”

There are other songs composed for the Cubs in the past few years. Here’s “All the Way” (Eddie Vedder Cubs song w Ernie Banks)-Live-Wrigley Field, Chicago,IL-7/19/13…

 …and the Cubs Victory Song “By the Lakeside” by Katie Day:


Then there’s “(Bye Bye) Curse of 45” – Chicago Cubs 2016 Parody Song with Lyrics – Michele McGuire


Bye bye, curse of 45

Drive a goat on up to Wrigley and we’ll let it inside

These good old boys are gonna give it a try

Singin’ “This’ll be the year the curse dies…”

 I may be biased, but I deem them perhaps not as catchy as Goodman’s.

What music do you remember that’s related to a competition or sport (even if it’s from high school)?

78 thoughts on “Music and (My) Baseball”

  1. I still remember the baritone horn part from National Emblem March from marching band when I was in tenth grade, but since I’ve never followed or watched any sports, other than that I’ve got nothing.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Occasionally. I keep hoping my life will get more regular and I’ll be able to maintain a consistent time to practice.
        The biggest challenge is that, because I came to baritone from trumpet and french horn, my orientation is to treble clef. But there is hardly any baritone music available for treble clef- it’s all in bass clef, which means I have to try to rewire my brain to read in bass clef.


        1. I had a trumpet, but my embouchure couldn’t transition between the two mouthpieces. I had the horn ultrasonically cleaned and reconditioned and donated it to a school.


  2. It isn’t a sporting event per se, but the last night of the Proms concert certainly sounds like a sporting event. I get such a kick listening to Rule, Brittania and Pomp and Circumstance with all the rowdy horns and noise makers and singing in the background.

    I, too played in the school band. I was in the percussion section at games and played the bass drum. I remember we played lots of Beatles songs arranged for marching and pep band. Looking back, any popular music so arranged sounded pretty odd.


    1. I played “Latina” by Dr. Ben. it was probably when I was in the U of M concert band (not the top band, so we got stuck with stuff like that.) And not the marching band! **Shiver**

      Chris in Owatonna


  3. I just found recordings of the Ames High fight song on the internet. It didn’t even sound familiar. I was such a shy, feral kid I didn’t even go to many sporting events. I followed that up by attending a college where our teams sucked.

    The lyrics to “Sons of Old Grinnell” sound familiar, and I can sort of remember the tune:

    Sons of old Grinnell,
    Let your voices swell,
    In a song to the staunch, the true
    In praise of Alma Mater,
    As her sons ever love to do.
    Thy glory and thy honor,
    Thy fame alone we tell,
    And ever for thee,
    Our love shall be,
    Grinnell — Grinnell — Grinnell.

    But my one true memory in this category is the astonishment I felt when my mother performed her high school fight song from Manchester (IA) High School in the early 1930s. You just don’t expect this sort of thing from your middle-aged mom, bouncing in the dining room and waving imaginary pom poms while she sings out:

    Ish biddeley oh boaten
    Bo bo skeedooten daddle
    Ish biddeley oh boaten
    Wah dah cha
    Ish biddeley oh boaten
    Bo bo skeedooten daddle
    Ish biddeley oh boaten
    Siss boom bah
    Boom a lacka boom a lacka
    Boom a lacka ha
    Manchester High School
    Rah rah rah

    As near as I can tell, versions of this cheer swept American schools and colleges in the 1920s. I can offer three cultural references to the cheer:

    A Johnny Carson Carnac the Magnificent routine;
    A Bugs Bunny cartoon; and
    A character in the Pogo comic strip named Sis Boombah, a large hen wearing bloomers

    Liked by 1 person

    1. talk of school songs makes me think of “Hail, Minnesota,” the U of M’s “alma mater” song as opposed to the “Minnesota Rouser,” which is the “fight song.” I always get choked up when I hear my 45 rpm of it. First time I heard it was before a U of M band trip to Mexico in 1978. Dr. Ben gathered the Marching Band, Jazz Ensemble (my group), and Wind Ensemble together in the old charter terminal at the airport (now Terminal 2–used to be the Humphrey terminal.).

      I’d never been aware of hearing it before (although Dad is an alum), but when 200+ instrumental musicians got together and sang it accapella in near perfect harmony, as a unifying experience before going to a foreign country, I was blown away. Tears, shaking, pure emotion, and love for the power of music to unite…. *sniff*…pardon me while I go listen to it on my stereo.

      Chris in Owatonna

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Speaking of Chicago: “The city white has fled the earth, beside where azure waters lie (something about something nobler), the city gray shall rise.”
    I have some errors there, but the first and last line I have right. It in fact sings beautifully. What is the city white? And why would you refer to your college as the city gray.? This was written before 1900 and the imagery is supposed to be about the 1892 Colombian Exposition, called the white city for all the white buildings, has been torn down and the U of Chi campus is being built in gray stone where some of the white city stood, all meaning a sort of new Eden being created on the distant south side. This is the Alma Mater, which sings like an Alma Mater and well. But who wants to call something of which they are proud gray?
    My group of friends, who were very musical and loved to sing, used to sing it as “the city dingy”. Many on the football team used to sing it in the shower after practice.
    Still all seems weird imagery to me.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. With John D. Rockefeller funding the place I doubt that. We used to wonder why. The old gym, stain-glassed windows and all, has a wonderful extensive museum of the old glory days of U of C football. The curator in the mid 60’e did not know the origin of the name.


  5. Garrison Keillor wrote a very fun tribute to a Twins player. That player was a minor figure on the team at a time it was pathetic, back in the late 1970s and early 1980s. It had a catchy tune. The tribute was mostly inspired by this guy’s wonderful name: Bombo Rivera.

    Bombo, Bombo, Bombo Rivera!
    What other players hit one of, he hits a paira!

    Liked by 3 people

      1. thanks for submitting. i had a weird day on forday that woldnt allow me to submit my friday commitment until saturday. it was done but i wasnt able to get it sent really it was done honest. except for the pictures

        Liked by 1 person

  6. OT, but funny: My granddaughter as a part in a school play in which she uses a German accent, which is supposed to sound a fake. Some of their lines she speaks to a German foreign exchange student. She asked him how her German accent sounded. He said he didn’t know what a German accent sounded like. 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    1. natalie wood night firday on turner classic and it was hosted by her daughter and hodower husband. it was started with her first movie where she was 6 and asked to do a german accent in an orson wells movie. she stole the movie. it was wonderful. her german accent was good. she must have had a german or two to steer her. where did the granddaughter get her coaching?


  7. Number one has to be the Wide World of Sports theme song with the commentary above it extolling “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat,” and then seeing the hapless ski jumper nearly fall and tumble to his death off the ski jump (BEFORE he even go to the end of the runway!)

    Chris in Owatonna (who always had a fantasy of ski jumping despite watching that opening video hundreds of times. Then I saw the ski jump at Hyland Hills in Bloomington, and soon after, the Olympic hill in Calgary, and I was cured of that crazy notion. 😉 )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. i live a block from highland hills and they just finished fixing the little ski jumps that you start on before you head over to the monster jump. the little ones are really little then a little bigger and the medium size before they send you over to the big one. i think we could do it chris. do you want to check into adult beginner classes. id join you. do yo want pictures?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Sorry, tim. No way I’m going down a ski jump. I get acrophobia cleaning out my gutters. All I can visualize of myself learning to ski jump is Eddie “the Eagle” Edwards and what it cost him in crashes before he figured it out. And I’m 40 or 50 years older than he was!



  8. This is better than the one that’s going around showing He Who Shall Not Be Named singing this same song at Wrigley Field. Bill Murray is more fun than that other person.


  9. OT: Two days. That’s all we have to endure now. We need to get through today, then suffer the complicated agonies of tomorrow. Of course, when it is over it will not really be over. We’ll still be stuck in an awful mess, dealing with complicated problems.

    I mean to chat here often tomorrow. Maybe we can help each other through what is sure to be a difficult day, a day to test our souls no matter what the big decision turns out to be.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I expect Clinton to win. If it is otherwise, I say without a trace of hyperbole that evil will rule this country for the next four years.


      1. otherwise it will only raise hell and interfear with truth justace and the american way as we all try to cope with the realazation that hitler won with 30% vote. we are at 42% scary to ralize. whackos yes but 42%


    2. Young Adult and I will be heading to the polls early – plan to be there before opening so hopefully we won’t be in line too long. Our reward will be something hot at Caribou afterwards. During the day, I’ll be online but at night this week I’m tied to my egg table. I’ll keep the computer nearby for occasional comments.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh, good, folks are still reading this thread. I wanted to stop in to let people know that Minnesota lost another great poet on Friday. John Rezmerski, professor emeritus at Gustavus, friend and literary executor of Bill Holm, a founding member of the Lady Poetesses from Hell performance group, and a friend and mentor of mine for 21 years, has died. His obituary is here:
    A sizable segment of local science fiction fandom is devastated, as, I’m sure, is an large segment of the Upper Midwest’s literary community.

    If you haven’t heard of him, do yourself a favor and hunt out his books. His work benefits greatly from being read aloud, as the video in the article will demonstrate. Oh, and a number of his science fiction poems (most if not all of them funny to hilarious) were published in “Tales of the Unanticipated”, issues available here:, and the Lady Poetesses anthology is here:

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks, it’s been too long. There was a week in which I didn’t have anything to say about the topics, and then I started forgetting to check the blog. I’ll stop in more often from now on.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Sounds like a problem connecting to the internet. I had something similar a while back; the router had died and need to be replaced. But of course it could be something entirely different; I’m no expert.


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