Craig Finn, leader of the Hold Steady, has never lost his nostalgic affection for the Twin Cities despite moving to Brooklyn several years ago. And he’s showing it in the rocking new rally song “Don’t Call them Twinkies!” (Assisting on the song is an alt-rock dream calling themselves the Baseball Project: Peter Buck and Scott McCaughey, of R.E.M.; Steve Wynn of Dream Syndicate; and Linda Pitmon, former drummer for Minneapolis’s Zuzu’s Petals.) Listen to the song at The Current.
There are other songs played at Target Field that announce the players’ arrival at the plate (called “walk-up music”) via subtle puns and references—part of what makes the park one of the coolest in the country. It doesn’t hurt that the Twins’ music director is the sly Kevin Dutcher, well-known in theater circles for his acting and directing. Dude’s got good taste (which helped him corral the Hold Steady earlier this year to record “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”).
Jason Kubel, for instance, likes to walk up to the Beastie Boys’ “Sabotage.”
Jim Thome, the veteran who’s been a key acquisition for the Twins this year, apparently is not much of a music guy at all, so he let Michael Cuddyer pick his walk-up tunes: soundtrack snippets from the swords-and-sandals movie 300. Can’t say I remember hearing this at a game, but there it is. Here’s one, called “Returns a King”:
And then there’s Danny Valencia, who’s been so clutch down the stretch this year. It may or may not be his official walk-up music, but here’s The Decemberists doing “O Valencia.”