The start of major league baseball season tomorrow has prompted me to post about songs about sports including those sung (being generous there) by athletes.
For baseball, I’m posting “Joe DiMaggio Done It Again” from 2000’s Mermaid Avenue Vol. II. Billy Bragg and Wilco took unpublished Woody Guthrie lyrics and set them to new music. The music for this song was written by Bragg and it is sung by Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy.
I saw DiMaggio at a baseball autograph show in Atlantic City around 1990. He was not memorable. There was a long list of stuff he wouldn’t sign which included Marilyn Monroe-related items and The DiMaggio Albums (2 book set). The books included commentaries by DiMaggio so I thought it was odd and disappointing that he wouldn’t sign them,
Obviously, the best-known baseball song is “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” but I’ll post about that another time
For cricket, I have to go with “Cricket” by the Kinks from 1973’s Preservation Act 1. I don[t know much about the sport but I have always liked the song.
For football, I’ll go with “The Super Bowl Shuffle” by the 1985 Chicago Bears. Fortunately, these Super Bowl champions were better at football than music.
For hockey, here’s “Penalty Box” by Dave Schultz who was the highly-penalized enforcer for the Philadelphia Flyers in the early 1970s. He holds the NHL record for most penalty minutes in a season. I doubt this song was played much outside of the Philadelphia area.
Basketball is represented by Cheech and Chong’s 1973 “Basketball Jones”. I also included the 1996 Space Jam version by Barry White and Chris Rock.
7/22/22 – several videos no longer available and I removed them