Apr 30, 2004

The National Capital Commission replies, without answering my question

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Apr 29, 2004

Home run damages video scoreboard ... and creates marketing opportunity

The Arizona Diamondback's Richie Sexson hit the video scoreboard with a home run on Monday night. From the Arizona Republic:

"Damage to a $360 chip in the JumboTron screen presented a marketing opportunity the Diamondbacks could not resist. Sexson's rocket left a dark spot near the center of the screen. It was highlighted Tuesday and will continue to be through at least today. When Sexson's name was announced before Tuesday night's opening pitch, an arrow pointed to the spot and a message flashed onto the screen. "Hit me again," it said."


Apr 28, 2004

Jann Arden apologizes for off-key anthem

From The Ottawa Sun this morning:

Alberta pop singer Jann Arden has apologized for her rocky rendition of O Canada at a playoff hockey game earlier this month. Arden's off-key anthem also prompted several complaints from CBC viewers tuned in to Game 6 of the Calgary-Vancouver NHL Stanley Cup playoff series.

Her justification was that she couldn't hear herself. She couldn't even tell if the mic was on... The Flames say that they'll issue an ear monitor to future anthem singers at their games. "Poor Jann got hung out to dry," said Dave Imbach, director of entertainment for the Flames, who said he received "lots of complaints" about Arden's performance.


Apr 26, 2004

Video scoreboards the latest weapon in the war against terrorism

From WOKR 13 in Rochester:

"The next time you head to a [Rochester] Red Wings [baseball] game you'll get more than peanuts and popcorn. You'll get a lesson on terrorism. It's part of a homeland security initiative across the country, aimed at help millions of Americans prepare for a potential attack."

"When fans look up at the jumbotron on the Red Wings' scoreboard, they usually see pictures of the players. However, for 30 seconds before the game they are now looking at Tom Ridge, Director of Homeland Security. The Department of Homeland Security asked a number of minor league ballparks to broadcast a public service message before every game."

Read more

(Nothing pumps up a crowd like a security warning from Tom Ridge!)

Apr 25, 2004

Hockey music: Punk Rock, Guy Lafleur Disco, the organ, and more

From Gary Genosko:

"Puck rockers would like us to think they have principles, and they like to wax nostalgic about the organs and organ players of yesteryear. The sports world's organ music, it seems, is the proto-punk aesthetic. Organ music was used in hockey arenas to whip up the emotions of hometown fans (albeit with considerable cheese and fluff). There were telling moments of rebellion. For example, the league (the establishment) intervened, as they once did in Major League Baseball, when organists (the rebels) began to play "Three Blind Mice" whenever the referee or one of his two linesmen was thought to have made a bad call against the home team. There is a certain defiance attached to the organ, and it is said to have had its purest punk expression in the early music of Elvis Costello and the Attractions, with their aggressive, punchy organ work.

Unfortunately, puck rockers have it all wrong. The real music of hockey is disco - and I have incontrovertible evidence to support my claim, even if I feel a bit disheartened in staking it. For once upon a time I felt for disco the same contempt puck rockers now feel for cold and remote Euro-synth-pop. When I was a teenager, my neighborhood road hockey team had a bitter rivalry with a team we contemptuously called "the discos." They were the hair team, and we were greasy and shaggy; they wielded blowdriers, and we looked like we just rolled out of bed: Stayin’ Alive meets Dazed and Confused in a struggle over hockey style."

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Meet the organist: Phoenix Coyotes

From the Phoenix Coyotes web site, a bio on organist David "Uncle Dave' Lindsay:

"The organ is a symbol of history in the NHL and has been around for as long as rinks have been skated on. When the Phoenix Coyotes make their move to Glendale on December 27th they’ll look to restore some tradition to the hockey experience by introducing organist David Lindsay better known as “Uncle Dave” to the game night experience. The sound, feel and nostalgia of an organ will bring an authentic feel to Coyotes hockey in the Valley."

Read more

Apr 20, 2004

Vancouver Canucks pre-game music

I caught the Vancouver Canucks / Calgary Flames game 7 on tv last night. Kudos to the game entertainment staff for their creative work in the pre-game show. They used a three-song sequence to kick off the night:
1. House lights go to black. Not sure what the music they used was, but it sounded like native music. A haunting pan flute, accompanied by slo-mo highlights on the videoboard. A nice tie-in with the aboriginal heritage in B.C., and the native theme the Canucks use on their jerseys.

2. Mascot Fin makes his entrance, to the Who's Won't Be Fooled Again. (Which Philadelphia used in the pre-game of their series-clincher against New Jersey.)

3. Player entrance, to U2's Where The Streets Have No Name. This is a tradition in Vancouver, and the atmosphere when they play this song is electric. They also mixed quotes from Winston Churchill.

The Canucks have a really good "Game Presentation" section on the Web site. Lots of info on their performers and other fun stuff.

But the best is the Canucks Message board, which features the "D.J. Dave Forum", where fans can discuss the arena music with Vancouver's music man. Cool.

Apr 16, 2004

Anthem singer's blues

Chris Zelkovich in the Toronto Star:

Where have you gone, Kate Smith? A hockey nation turns its lonely eyes to you.

Smith passed away in 1986 and it appears her legacy — the anthem singer who can lead an NHL team to victory — went with her...

Smith ran up an incredible 58-9-2 record during the `70s. That meant whenever she belted out ``God Bless America" as a prelude to the Broad Street Bullies' act, the team had almost a 90 per cent chance of winning.

That kind of thing just doesn't happen any more.

Read the full article...

Apr 15, 2004

Don't Mess With My Too Too

Nashville Predators @ Detroit Red Wings tonight .... Nashville's Jordan Too Too gets a penalty ... the dj plays Denise Lasalle's 1980's hit "Don't Mess With My Tutu".

Detroit always comes up with great situational tunes. Another example was back in 2002. When they won their Western Conference final, the dj chose "Sweet Caroline" for the end of the game, in preparation for the final against the Hurricanes.

The guy behind Detriot's music was (and may be still -- I'll have to check) Tim Campbell.

Habs use videoboard to hex Bruins

"Maybe ghosts don't live in the Bell Centre, after all. Surely, the ghosts that took up residence in the Montreal Forum for years would have taken care of the Bruins last night. They would have made sure a penalty was called on Travis Green for slashing Alexei Kovalev right before Glen Murray scored the game-winner at 9:27 of the second overtime on a breakaway.
Typically, something wacky happens here to thwart the Black 'n' Gold, like the infamous ``too many men on the ice'' penalty during the 1979 playoffs, which the Habs kept showing on the Jumbotron before each overtime. "

From the Boston Herald

Apr 14, 2004

Montreal Canadiens music: Repetition is a good thing

A great game last night between Montreal and Boston at the Bell Centre. Montreal usually has one of the more interesting game day productions in the NHL. There's the french folk music, lots of Beatles tunes and other old pop music. During last night's game, I noticed a high repetition of three sound clips:

  • "Day-O" (Banana Boat Song - Harry Belafonte)
  • "Make It Clap" (Sean Paul)
  • "Put Your Hands Up In The Air" (DJ Tonka)

These songs were eached used at least 2 or 3 times per period. Normally, the general rule in sports is "don't repeat songs", but the Montreal approach seemed to work in 'training' fans to respond. The repetition got to be a bit too much by the second overtime period, these songs were getting stale.

So when the Habs (hopefully) return home for Game 6, I hope the dj plays each of the songs once per period. Repetition is good, but too much of it becomes ... repetitious.

Apr 2, 2004

Blazers Pledge to Fans

Just came across this while visiting the Portland Trailblazers web site:

We are rededicating ourselves to connecting with you, our fans and our community. It is our vow to restore this franchise to the level of respectability that you deserve. We are committed to providing you with enhanced programs, service and a special inclusion in the franchise that conveys how greatly we value your support. We have a vision for the future of this franchise and you are a vital piece of that future.

- To evaluate character along with basketball talent when selecting players.

- To establish a player code of conduct and to hold our players accountable for their actions both on and off the court.

- To have our organization, its staff and team members be active in the community.

- To enable fans to easily follow the team by broadcasting all 82 regular-season games on the radio and a minimum of 25 games over-the air and 25 non pay-per-view cable games.

- To make live home games available to all fans by starting ticket prices as low as $10.

- To be accessible to fans at all times through blazers.com feedback.

- To create a fan advisory board to meet with front-office staff.

- To provide affordable in-arena food options for special game nights.

Read the full pledge