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NASCAR drivers pick song titles

by Dave Grayson
Thursday, March 18, 2010

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The pre race ceremony, prior to Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Bristol, includes an introduction to what will likely become a new musical tradition. The Sprint Cup drivers, who will comprise the 43 car starting field, will be introduced to the fans backed with musical selections they themselves selected.

Taking a look at the recently published song selections of the drivers it's clear that the tunes represent the taste of today's NASCAR young guns. Many of these songs are as hard driving as their race cars with an edge to them that represents the world they live in.

Some of the choices are most interesting. Such as the song Brad Keselowski will be introduced to. NASCAR's current poster child for defiance will be introduced Sunday afternoon to "I Won't Back Down" by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Considering past situations with other drivers, yes I mean Carl Edwards, the song seems to match the words we often hear from this brash young driver.

Are there other song choices? To quote the Bristol race Grand Marshall Stone Cold Steve Austin: "oh hell yeah!"

In reference to what happened to Keselowski during the Atlanta race two weeks ago there's AC DC's "You Shook Me All Night Long", "Shake Rattle And Roll" by Bill Haley and the Comets and it goes without saying that Pat Benatar's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" would be appropriate.

If by some chance Keselowski has arrived as some sort of personal revelation, since the Atlanta race, he could also walk out onto the stage to Aretha Franklin's "R-E-S-P-E-C-T."

But, if by chance, he's still in that defiance mode there's always the theme from the television show "Cops." The one that goes "bad boy, bad boy what cha' gonna do?"

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Then there's the other side of NASCAR's current personnel dispute: "Cousin" Carl Edwards. I must admit that I found his song selection rather interesting. It's "Black Betty" which is an old rhythm and blues song by Leadbelly that became a 1970's hit by an obscure one hit wonder band named Ram Jam. For those of you keeping scorecards, Edwards will be using the newer version by an Australian band named Spiderbait." In case you're not familiar with the song, the lyrics goes:

"oh black Betty bam de lam, oh black betty bam de lam

she only had one child bam de lam, the damn thing's gone wild bam de lam."

Were there other appropriate choices for Edwards' walk on music? I though of several in less time that it would take the driver to scream "bam de lam."

Again, referencing the Atlanta incident, can you imagine Carl Edwards walking out on stage to Bachman Turner Overdrive's "Takin' Care Of Business?" How about AC DC's "Dirty Deed Done Dirt Cheap"? For you oldies but goodies fans there's also Bobby Lewis' 1961 hit "Tossin' And Turnin'."

Considering the fan outcry from Atlanta, Six Pack Eddie, my long time racing buddy, came up with Bon Jovi's "Wanted Dead Or Alive." If, by chance, Edwards is worried about continued fan reaction then he could slowly stroll across the stage to Bryan Adams' "Please Forgive Me."

In deference to his three race probation period Edwards could also use "Keep Your Hands To Yourself" by the Georgia Satellites.

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Then there's the matter of fan favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. Check his name on the Bristol song selection list and it says TBA, (to be announced). It seems NASCAR's most popular driver hasn't decided which song to walk out to yet.

Why yes, I'd be glad to lend a helping hand.

On the positive side there's always Alabama's country classic "You Can't Keep A Good Man Down." There's also Fleetwood Mac's "Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow" which worked very well for the Bill Clinton presidential campaign. If Junior prefers something with a harder edge to it then Duran Duran's "Hungry Like The Wolf" might work.

If he's looking for a song that reflects his life in a fish bowl existence then there's Ricky Martin's "Living La Vida Loca." If he's looking for a tune to respond to the media's constant scrutiny and criticism then there's the Big and Rich honky tonk anthem "Why Does Everybody Want To Kick My Ass."

There's also a selection that's bound to get me into trouble with the girlfriend, the card carrying T shirt wearing member of the Junior Nation: Frankie Avalon's "When The Good Guys Used To Win."

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It occurs to me that there are some other categories that deserve some special music during the Bristol Motor Speedway's introduction ceremony. For example you could open the show with the Dovell's 1962 classic "Bristol Stomp."

You certainly would want some special music for drivers who are affiliated with acknowledged start and park teams. "Money For Nothing" by Dire Straits immediately comes to mind. On the country side of this issue is "I'd Sure Hate To Break Down Here" by Trace Adkins.

If by chance Danica Patrick dropped by for a visit, to soak up some more NASCAR atmosphere, she would certainly warrant a VIP introduction. The obvious walk on music for this occasion would be Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Want To Have Fun." The not so obvious, but very funny, choice would be Deanna Carter's "Did I Shave My Legs For This?"

I also think it would be very nice if all of NASCAR's top executives were introduced prior to the race. They could walk out onto the stage while the drivers in the 43 car starting field serenaded them with Bette Midler's "You Are The Wind Beneath My Wings."

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I need to stop now. I should return all of these compact discs to the shelf before the girlfriend finds them lying on the living room floor. I'm probably all ready in trouble for the Dale Jr comments.

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