Hey St. Louis, do you like apples?
So let’s say you’re a sports fan who was born in Boston in 1995. You’ve won 13 titles since you were five years old. (I’m from Minnesota, in these parts NCAA Hockey titles count too.) That’s absurd, but good for you.
As the Hub floats along on another sports high, here are the top 10 songs since the turn of the century about Boston for you to have one while toasting baseball’s champions. We’re obviously not counting “Sweet Caroline” because it’s from the ’60’s, even though it’s become a high point of games at Fenway Park. (About Boston? No, but Neil Diamond admitted he wrote it with JFK’s kid in mind.) Has it become too kitschy? No, and if you think so, you take things too seriously. If drunk hoods from Southie can sing it, who are you to frown?
10. “Outside of a Dream”— The Push Stars, March, 2004
The Patriots started this ridiculous run in 2002, but it was the Sox win in 2004 that seemed to burst the dam. I’m cheating right off the bat, because this song isn’t about Boston, but it’s by a Boston band and came out just before the baseball season started in 2004. It’s a song that Sox fans no longer have to feel such kinship with.
9. “Boston (Ladies of Cambridge)“– Vampire Weekend, October, 2007
The b-side of Mansard Roof, it drops enough Boston references to make the list. Not exactly a party song, but bouncy enough to maybe listen to in the shower before you hit the Hub to get feckin’ hammuhed.
8. “Boston”– Patty Griffin, October, 2013
This one just came out earlier this month, it’s not even on YouTube yet. Check it out on I-Tunes. Review says, “a scorching full-band blast that can’t be tamed”.
7. “I’m Shipping Up To Boston”— Dropkick Murphys, July, 2005
Well, yes, this entire list could be made up of Dropkick Murphys songs. Loud and tough, just like this little fucker below. Fuck you too.
6. “Boston”— Kenny Chesney, January, 2005
A tip of the cap to all the ladies from Boston. Some of whom are cool enough to hold up this sign.
5. “Boston”— Augustana, August, 2006
“I think I’ll go to Boston, I think I’ll start a new life, I think I’ll start it over.” That could have been Big Papi after the Twins let him go.
Ok, so maybe none of the hoodrats from Southie are listening to this when they’re out with the boys. Maybe in their “late at night with Skylar moments?”
4. “Boston, USA”— The Ducky Boys, November, 2004
I bet this kid loves this song, I bet he does. Too good not to use twice.
3. “For Boston”– Dropkick Murphys, February, 2001
The band of Boston takes the Boston College fight song and puts their spin on it. Cool.
2. “Young New England”— Transit, April, 2013
The song came out days before the bombing at the Boston Marathon. It does a great job of capturing the spirit of the city. At least the spirit of the young drinkers, of whom there are many. They had a blast last night. And they will tonight and tomorrow night and the night after that.
1. “Tessie”— Dropkick Murphys, August, 2004
The Red Sox anthem. I’m not impressed by much when it comes to sports bars, but I was really impressed on the night of Sunday, October 17, 2004, at a place called Sliders in Plainville, CT. I had ordered take out wings and showed up to pick them up during David Ortiz’s at bat. Ortiz hit a walk-off homer that got the Sox on the board in the series against the Yankees. It’s the loudest I’ve ever heard a bar in my life. The walls were shaking. People were hugging and crying. This song came on, I’d never heard it before, but I think I was the only one who hadn’t and people sang along loud and proud. I was dumbfounded. Ten days later the Sox had won their eighth straight game and the World Series. I had downloaded the song by then and was a Sox fan for at least a month.
— Bill Hubbell