I’m far from a music critic. I used to listen to a lot of music, all the time. As I get older (I turn 30 later this year, so pour one out for your elder over here), I tend to find myself in a position I used to mock when I was younger: I listen to new music and I legitimately don’t get it. “Why is this good?” I find myself asking more and more. “This just sounds like noise/mumbling/screaching,” my extremely not-hip self thinks.
So, basically, I’m the perfect person to write this piece, because baseball players have notoriously horid taste in music and what they choose to walk-up to. So, let’s dig into Reds player’s choices for at bat music.
- I’m only going to highlight the batters here, because yes, pitchers get music when they appear on the mound and, yes, they also sometimes bat. But I feel like if I get into the starters, I also have to get into the relievers, and, well, this thing will be 3000 words long.
- I’m only going to highlight one song of those players that have multiple songs, because, yeah. 3000 words.
- These aren’t in any order. Likely, they’ll be in batting order rather than any kind of rank.
- I’m likely to be stupid and wrong, but that’s not limited to this particular article.
- Song list courtesy of Jamie Ramsey over at Better Off Red and current as of, uh, a month ago.
Jesse Winker - Watch by Travis Scott ft. Lil Uzi Vert & Kanye West
So, I guess the “Watch” that’s mentioned in the title of this song is the “Rollie” featured in the chorus, which lends itself, in my humble opinion, to a super corny exchange: “Look at your Rollie, uh, look at my Rollie/That’s a small face, uh, this a big face.” It’s your typical money brag, but, meh.
That said, this song kinda bangs. Kanye’s verse is pretty great (he puts spin on the aforementioned chorus and it’s way better). There’s a Larry David reference, which is always going to score points with me, and then there’s some mental health stuff that’s actually more self-serving than anything, but still. It’s worth it.
Then they let Kylie Jenner “sing” the outro, which /wet fart sooooouuunnnd.
Second song: Pick up the Phone by Travis Scott - Big Travis Scott fan, that Jesse Winker is. This video is super explicit. There’s naked ladies and naked cats. For real.
Jose Peraza - Síguelo Bailando by Ozuna
I have no idea what the hell is going on here, but this song is great. I’m a sucker for Spanish songs, because even though I speak a very, very limited Spanish, they SOUND SO DAMN FUN. This is aided in the video here by the dancing bear.
Google Translate tells me this song title is “Follow him Dancing” or “Follow it Dancing?” Anyway, here’s what Genius tells me this song’s about:
“Síguelo Bailando” from the Puerto Rican Ozuna talks to us about a woman who attends nightclubs every weekend. This woman is seen by Ozuna, who, totally shot by the beautiful woman, proceeds to seduce her and invite her to dance with him to enjoy her beauty.
Jose Peraza is so much cooler than me.
Tucker Barnhart - They Don’t Know by Jason Aldean
Oh my God this song sucks sooooo much.
So, Tucker must be, unsurprisingly, a huge Jason Aldean fan, because he has three songs, and all of them are by Jason Aldean.
I’ve only listened to two of them. Neither are good, I expect the other one isn’t either.
I chose this one, though, because basically I want to point out that Jason’s pretty much made this exact song already. Here, from this song:
They call us a two lane just passing by slow down town / Yeah, they say what’s there to do when you ain’t got nothin’ around / Just a few street lights, speed limit signs that all say twenty-five / But those folks ain’t lived in our lives.
I present to you an older, “better” Aldean song, Flyover States:
They’ve never drove through Indiana / Met the men who plowed that earth / Planted that seed, busted his ass for you and me / Or caught a harvest moon in Kansas / They’d understand why God made those fly over states.
Indiana shoutout aside... I’ve drove through Indiana. I appreciate they plowed that earth and planted that seed, but good lord does it suck. The road sucks. It’s flat. There’s nothing to see, unless you really fuckin’ like to see that seed grow that all that ass was busted for. If you don’t live here (which I legitimately like), or near here, and aren’t coming here: Yes. Fly over it.
Still, the idea here is... you’ve already made this song, Jason. “They” don’t appreciate “us,” the Real Americans. If we dug deeper into Aldean’s catalog, chances are we’d probably find more. I’ve gone about three deeper than I ever planned on.
Other Songs: Pick up a Jason Aldean album.
Joey Votto - Jefe de Jefes by Los Tigres Del Norte
Joey Votto is an international treasure and we don’t deserve him.
Scooter Gennett - Psycho by Post Malone ft. Ty Dolla $ign
So “Post Malone” lands firmly into the aforementioned category of “Things I Don’t Get.” I’m on Twitter a lot, and he seems to be a thing on there and social media in general and I had literally never heard a single thing he’d done until about three weeks ago. It happened to be this song.
That said, I do kinda dig this song. That’s not really a value judgement, because I can’t say with any real conviction that it’s “good.” If I were to say to you, “This is a good song,” and you were to reply, “Nah this is hot garbage,” I’d probably just shrug and say, “Yeah, maybe.”
It does fall into that, “Why is he so mumbly?” a bit, but the beat is pretty nice and it’s just pretty chill in general. I’m for it. I understand you may not be.
Also, typing “Lil Uzi Vert” and “Ty Dolla $ign” is the most hip I’ve been in months.
Also, also: Post Malone has some aggressively bad tattoos. Yikes.
Eugenio Suarez - El Bandolero by Don Omar ft Tego Calderon
I have no idea why Dom from The Fast and the Furious is the “cover art” for this video. Regardless, this song fucking rules. I have no idea what is going on here, but if you were to tell me, “This is Notorious BIG rapping in Spanish circa 1995,” I’d be like, “Yeah, that sounds right.”
I feel like someone in Puerto Rico has gotten merc’d to this song, or because of this song. I very, very, very much be missing the point. But this presses all the right buttons for me.
Other Songs: Criminal (Natti Natasha & Ozuna) and No Te Vas (Nacho)
Scott Schebler - One Foot by Walk the Moon
Meh. This song doesn’t really do anything for me. Walk the Moon is a Cincy band made big, right? So I guess that’s pretty cool. I can’t help but feel like their lead singer is just a B-Side Adam Levine. That’s struck me since seeing this picture and this picture side by side... neither of them should be blonde, probably.
This song kinda makes me think Walk the Moon is a B-Side of Maroon 5, honestly. I’m getting too much of an Imagine Dragons feel here than I’m comfortable with.
Which is okay... Shut Up and Dance still bangs so fucking hard and will be played at every wedding and dance and club for years and years to come.
Other Song: Listen to the Music (Doobie Brothers). This seems like a very much Scott Schebler choice.
Adam Duvall - Creppin’ by Eric Church
I’m not going to editorialize this one too much because, I have to admit, this song very nearly kicks right in my wheelhouse of preferred music. I’m not a huge Eric Church fan, but he makes some really good music, and the fact that he’s realized some fairly mainstream success is one of the Actually Good things about the genre.
This song is kinda corny, but pretty decent. “Creeeeppiiiiiinnnn” is a bit cringy, but otherwise, I’m here for it.
Billy Hamilton - Walk It Talk It by Migos ft. Drake
Hey look it’s another thing Derek Doesn’t Get: Migos. I mean, this song is fine. It’s a club hit I can tell (I don’t go to clubs, so take that last proclamation with a couple grains of salt), but that beat lends itself to drunkenly grinding your pelvis* against your Tinder date’s pelvis*.
I’ve never heard this song before. I’ve heard this one, though, which I think was their big one a year or so, when I was supposed to know who Migos was. I also asked people to turn it off. I don’t dig it. Not even a little. “Raindrop, drop top...” Nah. Just nah.
Other Songs: Air Forces (Young Jeezy), My Dog (Lil Baby)
Alex Blandino - Shake Something by Louis the Child ft Joey Purp
Alex Blandino lives on the bench for some reason, but Wick runs this place now, and I’d probably get fired if I didn’t include him.
This is one of the more interesting ones on the list, though. The guy’s voice and lyrics don’t do a lot for me, but the beat and use of synth here are... a bit addicting. I listened to it three times just to make sure. I thought it was going to be something that I liked more after the first listen, and I did, but the rap never really did anything for me. It was the music. They should play that shit in elevators.