Doing The Baseball Boogie Spotify Playlist
Last night, Phish returned to Fenway Park for the first of two shows at the home of Major League Baseball’s American League team the Boston Red Sox. Phish previously played Fenway in 2009, and they “played two” concerts in 2016 at another historic baseball home, Chicago’s Wrigley Field where the National League Cubs have played for over 100 years. Back in 2004, Phish doubled up for two nights in Brooklyn at MCU Park (formerly KeySpan Park) for shows at the home of the New York Mets’ Minor League affiliate Brooklyn Cyclones. And the Old Orchard Beach Ball Park in Old Orchard Beach, Maine hosted Phish in 1994.
Beyond bands playing ballparks, music and baseball have long been intertwined, with songwriters regularly drawing upon the nation’s pastime for inspiration. Over the last several decades many songs have been written about baseball and the famous athletes who have played the game. Baseball has also produced musicians, like former outfielder and recording artist Bernie Williams and pitcher/guitarist Jake Peavy (seen above).
This edition of Saturday Stream presents a Spotify Playlist capturing the intersection of baseball and music. You don’t have to be a baseball fan to enjoy songs by Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, Warren Zevon and Dr. John whose NOLA-flavored “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” begins the playlist. Various versions of “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” by Sam Bush, Frank Zappa and others, appear throughout the set. There’s also, of course, John Fogerty’s classic “Centerfield” and a song from each of the three albums released by The Baseball Project featuring members of R.E.M., The Minus Five and Dream Syndicate.
There are songs about famous MLB players such as Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, Joe Dimaggio, Mickey Mantle, Nolan Ryan, Pete Rose and Bill Lee. The Chicago Cubs (a few times) and the New York Mets are represented as is Fenway. The aforementioned Yankee Bernie Williams appears on guitar alongside Bruce Springsteen and there are recordings made by Pearl Jam, James Taylor, Dave Matthews Band, Yo La Tengo, Billy Bragg & Wilco, Todd Snider and many more. Give it a swing below: