May 31, 2004

"In The Dome" - Calgary Flames Playoff Song

It's a tradition for local radio stations to make a tribute parody of a pop song to support their teams. Here in Ottawa, the most famous one was probably "All The Leafs Stink", to the tune of Blink 182's "All The Small Things". (A couple of years ago, there was a really good one out of Montreal, to the tune of Smashmouth's/The Monkees' "I'm A Believer". A cool English-French lyrical mixture that really captured the spirit of the Canadiens in a breakout playoff year.)

Anyhow, the best playoff song around this year is out of Calgary: "In The Dome", a take-off on 50 Cent's hit. Created for/by Vibe 98.5. Very well done. Listen here...

Hung sings at Blue Jays game

From "William Hung butchered Take Me Out To The Ball Game during the seventh-inning stretch of Sunday's matchup between the Toronto Blue Jays and Texas Rangers, much to the delight of 22,225 at SkyDome." Read more...

From "Hung's presence drew media usually indifferent to baseball, including Rolling Stone magazine. The team said more media credentials were issued Sunday than on Opening Day. The Blue Jays initially tried to get Hung for Opening Day, but that conflicted with the release of his debut album." Read more...

More: Hungmania Hits Toronto (via andPOP)

Update: .wmv audio file (right-click and "save as")

May 28, 2004

Pittsburgh Pirates return to traditional baseball with "Classic Night"

"Turn Back The Clock" promotions are nothing new in sports, but it sounds like the Pirates are doing it with a bit more authenticity than usual, on June 3:

"Instead of live and animated video, the Jumbotron scoreboard will remain static with an image resembling the scoreboard at Forbes Field. Rather than listening to recorded music of the modern day, fans will be entertained solely with music performed by Pirates organist, Vince Lascheid."


May 20, 2004

Flames celebrate win with Johnny Cash

I didn't catch all of the songs the Calgary Flames used after eliminating the Sharks last night -- it was loud in the Saddledome -- but one of the dj's picks stood out.

While the two teams shook hands, Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash played over the arena loudspeakers. Very appropriate lyrics: "I fell in to a burning ring of fire / I went down,down,down / and the flames went higher."

While a bit low-key, it was a nice break from the usual high-tempo dance stuff you usually hear during win celebrations.

Related: Don't Mess With My Too Too

May 19, 2004

Miami Heat take more shots at Indiana in their videos


"During a timeout at AmericanAirlines Arena, the Heat showed a clip from the movie "Hoosiers," with Gene Hackman's character giving a speech inside the locker room. But instead of showing the players actually in the locker room in the scene, the Heat marketing department replaced them with the Heat mascot, an old guy and other unathletic-like middle-aged men, including one with a mask on his face."


"The Heat pregame introductions resembled something borrowed from the video game-inspired world of the Arena Football League. While Eminem's "Lose Yourself" thumped through the arena, the taped video shown on the Jumbotron had the Heat players in worn hooded sweatshirts like Eminem wore in the music video and the movie "8 Mile."


May 18, 2004

Music played at Calgary Flames games

The Flames have posted a great article on their site about gameday music:

"Many people wonder about the songs played during the warm-up, opening sequence and more. The hardworking staff in the Entertainment department have plans for good saves, goals and fights. And then Calgary Flames favourite songs are played during breaks. Oh, that explains all the AC/DC and Metallica."


(It's a very agressive, heavy playlist.)

Also on the Calgary Flames site: Various clips from the Jumbotron on "Flames TV". (Choose "Jumbotron Clips".)

May 12, 2004

Ken Hitchock on controversial replays on the video scoreboard

From the Philadelphia Daily News:
"...the video scoreboard operator at the St. Pete Times Forum showed a replay of Brashear's hit on Taylor at least three different times, the crowd growing louder and angrier with each replay.

"I don't want to downcast anything here but something happened on the video screen today that's very upsetting," Flyers coach Ken Hitchcock said. "I think that's unfair, unfair for the National Hockey League. I don't care if it's in Tampa Bay or Philadelphia - you can't incite the fans like that. That's unfair.

"It's unfair to the players. It's a very dangerous situation. It should not happen. The replays are there to replay, not to question referees' calls or incite people. It's ridiculous. It should not happen..."
Also in the Tampa Tribune...

May 7, 2004

Major leagues, major schtick

As part of its coverage of the Spiderman ads on MLB bases, the National Post included a list of 'some of the zaniest promotional ideas emplyoed at Minor League Baseball games':

- Silent Night, Charleston Riverdogs: Fans encouraged to wear duct tape over their mouths, and to express themselves by holding up sings. Ushers replaced by librarians and golf marshals.

- Nobody Night, Charleston Riverdogs: Attempt to set the record for lowest attendance at a baseball game.

- Beer Batter, San Jose Giants: A visiting player is designated as the "beer batter". If he strikes out, beer is half-price for the next 15 minutes.

- Ted Williams Night, Bisbee-Douglas Copper Kings: Popsicles handed out to first 500 fans to honour the cryogenically-preserved Williams.

- Steroid Night, Clinton Iowa: The team handed out 1,500 urine sample cups.

May 6, 2004

Must live sports games be noisy?

From the Indiana Gazette, columnist writes Rick Weaver writes about his affection for :"Turn Back The Clock Nights", with "no loudspeakers, no JumboTron animations, no organ music, no music, period."
The reason many teams offer for having some form of entertainment during stoppages in play - be it between-innings contests, rock music, organ cheers, whatever - is that if there is nothing of that sort, fans might become bored and start amusing themselves with tasteless chants, rude remarks and all kinds of other garbage.


Perhaps we as a society need to challenge ourselves to slow down and use the time we spend at the ballpark to relax, enjoy and let the nuances of the game come to us so we can embrace it. A "quiet" game at PNC Park wouldn't hurt. Judging from the crowds the Pirates are drawing, they already have the quiet part down without even trying.


May 5, 2004

George & Barbara Bush on Kiss Cam

The American Press reported that former U.S. President George Bush and wife Barbara were shown on the video scoreboard kiss cam segment during a recent Houston Astros game. "They obliged, drawing wild applause."

Daktronics scoring big with monster stadium screens

From the Detroit News, a great article about Daktronics, a company that supplies video scoreboards. Some highlights:
Daktronics began in 1968 when Aelred Kurtenbach and Duane Sanders, electrical engineering professors from South Dakota State University, wanted to create jobs so their best students wouldn’t have to go out of state to find work. They peddled $5 stock to anybody interested -- shares now worth, after splits, about $2,700 -- and took years before finding their calling: scoreboards and video screens.

Now those 65,000 boards and screens across America turn sports into sound and light shows. The screens or scoreboards are in stadiums or arenas used by at least 85 pro teams and will be making an eighth appearance in the Olympics this summer in Athens. Sales are expected to reach $200 million this year, having more than tripled in seven years.


Daktronics screens are also getting bigger. Jacobs Field has America’s biggest video screen for sports: 36 feet by 149 feet. Only the Nasdaq stock exchange video screen in New York’s Time Square is bigger. Such high-visibility projects, suggests Simet, will create a trickle-down demand throughout the sports world. “I really feel that within 10 years almost all high schools will have video replay screens in gyms and at least big high schools will have them for football.”


And LEDs created sharper images than the TV-like technology that had powered stadium video screens. Sony, whose famous Jumbotrons were meant to help promote the company’s TV sets, installed its last giant video screen three years ago -- and is no longer in the business in the United States. Frank Kurtenbach, a Daktronics vice president as well as co-founder Aelred’s brother, understands that many people don’t know the Jumbotron will be extinct when remaining models wear out. But, he says, it can be annoying: “Frankly, John Madden says ’Jumbotron’ a bit too often.”


May 4, 2004

NBA fines Dallas Mavericks for showing video that ridiculed Kings

From Fox News: "A Dallas Mavericks video display on an arena scoreboard that poked fun at the visiting Sacramento Kings resulted in a $25,000 NBA. Stu Jackson, the NBA Senior Vice-President of Basketball Operations, announced the fine for a video that ridiculed opposing players before Dallas' 104-79 win over the Kings on April 24. But the Kings had the last laugh, winning the next game 94-92 at Dallas and capturing their first-round NBA playoff series."

Earlier, from the Sacramento Bee: "Kings players had mixed reactions to a video shown at American Airlines Center before Game 3 on Saturday. The cartoon skit had a Shaquille O'Neal-like image calling the Kings the "Queens." There was an image of Christie on all fours on a short leash held by his wife Jackie, and there was a cartoon image of Chris Webber answering why he attended the University of Michigan, blurting, "Money, money, money!" Read more...