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Friday Feedback: A Song for Villa

Marc chooses the opening to "<a href="" target="new">Circle of Life</a>" from <em>The Lion King</em>.
Marc chooses the opening to "Circle of Life" from The Lion King.

As I'm sure you've gathered by now, I'm a bit of a Seattle Mariners fan. That means every day I make a stop at Lookout Landing, one of the best-written blogs on the Internet. Two Fridays ago, one of the authors there put up this post, trying to find songs that best encapsulated the different Seattle sports teams. I really enjoyed it, loved some of the suggestions, and promptly pushed it to the back of my mind.

This week, when I was trying to figure out a good question for Friday Feedback, I tried to think outside of our normal soccer analysis box. I came up with the idea of trying to find a theme song for Aston Villa, but not the team in general. I want us to seek out a song that encapsulates this year. The ups, the downs, and the in-betweens. The angst that has been being a Villan. The trouble dropping points from winning positions. The controversy. What songs can take that in, what is our 2010-11 anthem? It wasn't intentional, but thinking about my answer, I realized I was probably inspired by the aforementioned Lookout Landing post. So thanks to Matthew for putting the idea in my head.

This week's question/task: Assign this team a song. Not Aston Villa in general, but this year's team in particular. What's their theme song?



Aaron: (Aaron has asked that I just give you this link)

Gareth: I'm gonna go with The Beatles' I'm So Tired, because it's a really effective depiction of most of the early mornings we've spent watching Villa this season.

(Gareth's response prompted the following set of emails, reprinted here for your enjoyment)

Kirsten: Raise your hands if you think Gareth has actually woken up to watch Villa games this season.

Gareth: Well, I can't watch them with my eyes closed. No matter how hard I try.

Robert: Well, I can't watch them with my eyes closed. No matter how hard Villa tries to make me.

That seems closer to accurate.

Gareth: Yeah. A fair bit of the Bolton match was experienced like that.

Kirsten: Back when I liked this season (oh, it was so long ago), the clear answer was Billy Joel's "Leave a Tender Moment Alone."

But now that the team has separated its lovers, and has, you know, decided to spiral downward and force us to watch matches with our hands over our eyes and our heads in our hands (all at once), I'd have to say that "Goon Squad" by Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers is an apt description of the season:

Why you tryin' to kick in an open door?
Do we have to see it again now, we've seen it before
We turn the other cheek
and take it on the chin now
Who let the goon squad in?

I'm also waiting for someone to come up with a song about praying desperately for a whistle, but not having it come soon enough.

Robert: At first, I regretted suggesting this idea, because I couldn't come up with a good answer. And this morning, while walking from the shuttle to the School of Music, it hit me. "Tubthumping" by Cumbawamba. It has lyrics that address the team: "I get knocked down, but I get up again." That pretty much nails the yo-yo we've been on while flirting with relegation. And they're a team that's left us singing when we're winning.

It has lyrics that work for the fans: "Pissing the night away." This team has driven many to drink, whether it's been "a whiskey drink, a vodka drink, a lager drink, [or] a cider drink." We've sung the songs that remind us of the good time ("John Carew, Carew") we've sung the songs that remind us of the better times (when Gabby was, indeed, fast as fuck). I really can't think of a more perfect fit to this crazy season.