Birth of a Song

I have written a few Red Sox songs this summer. (I guess you could say writing baseball songs is a hobby — but the truth is, these tunes just come to me when I’m driving or hacking on my guitar.) One is called, There is Nothing Bettah, Than Beating Mariano Rivera. My kids like thakids bandt one. Another is called, On the Corner of Brookline Ave and Yawkey Way. This is the song I invited my songwriting friends, Dan Page and Michele Page, to come listen to about a week ago to help me write some lyrics. Just before they got to my house, the tune and first line of, I’m A Member of Red Sox Nation came to me. When Dan and Michele arrived, I didn’t even bother playing the Brookline Ave and Yawkey Way tune for them — I knew that the Nation song was the one we needed to work on. And we did.

It was a good time. We filled pads of paper with Red Sox images, phrases, memories, and ideas, referred from time to time to our thesaurus and rhyming dictionary, wrote and rejected about 250 lines — and a few days later, the song was complete. I stayed up late a few nights recording/engineering it on my iBook (using Garage Band software and the Mac’s built-in mike) in my basement, which is also my kids’ playroom. Surrounded by Play-Doh, dolls, and Pokemon cards, I perched the laptop on the surface of our air hockey table, and if you listen to the song carefully, you can hear our loud basement fridge droning in the background.

A week after the basement sessions, my good friends Bob Little and Michelle Rufo, along with about ten other day camp counselors at Summer@Park, taught the song to about fifty campers and organized them for an informal recording session in the lobby of the school’s gym. The kids’ enthusiastic singing was added to the last verse, along with their favorite Red Sox cheer, "Let’s Go Red Sox!"

The song was played at Fenway Park between the top and bottom of the fifth inning last Wednesday, July 18. If it has been played since then, I haven’t heard about it. Whether or not I’m elected president of Red Sox Nation, Dan, Michele, and I hope this song is good enough and gets enough play to get stuck in people’s heads across New England for years to come, making them smile every time they hear it.

I’m A Member of Red Sox Nation, by Rob Crawford, Dan Page & Michele Page

(Chorus)
I’m a member of Red Sox Nation, it’s a kind of a family
Wherever I roam, my Fenway home, that’s where I long to be
I’m a member of Red Sox Nation, it’s a kind of insanity
Yeah, I’ll live and die, with Red Sox pride, for eternity

(Verse 1)
I fake a smile, November until Opening Day
Suffering baseball withdrawal around the clock
When April comes, hey, meet me down on Yawkey Way
That’s when Red Sox Nation starts to rock

(Chorus)

(Verse 2)
I sleepwalk through the days when there’s a West Coast swing
Married to the TV and the radio
For tickets in October I’d give anything
Still payin’ Red Sox debts from long ago

(Chorus)

(Verse 3)
My mama told me bedtime tales ’bout number nine
My daddy taught me how Yastrzemski tracked down flies
Dirty Water, Tessie, and Sweet Caroline
Now I sing them to my kids as lullabies

(Chorus)

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