Saturday, November 8, 2008

Song Of The Day - November 8, 2008

Today's song of the day is a modern take on an old classic. In 1908, John and Michael Shea wrote one of the most recognizable songs the world has known, even though the two brothers thought it was very "amateurish."

"The Notre Dame Victory March" was dubbed the "greatest of all college fight songs" in college football's centennial season in 1969. There are plenty of other fine collegiate tunes - including Tennessee's Rocky Top, Texas' Texas Fight, Michigan's Hail to the Victors, Oklahoma's Boomer Sooner, LSU/Clemson's Tiger Rag, even Virginia Tech's Tech Triumph which I have grown fonder of thanks in small part to my fellow comrade - but for my money, nothing is more pleasing to the ears than the Notre Dame Victory March.

Michael Shea, music composer, and John Shea, lyricist, intended the original version of the Victory March to be as a stand-in until someone wrote a better song. In fact, even though it was written in 1908 it was not played on campus until 1909 and not at an athletic event until a decade later!

On October 4th, 2008 when Notre Dame took on the Stanford Cardinal I had the distinct pleasure and honor of performing in the Centennial Celebration of the Notre Dame Victory March. More than 500 alumni took part in what was truly a special weekend for Notre Dame, as this year marks the 100th birthday of one of the greatest and most recognizable songs in history.

That said, today's rendition is an instrumental cover by the Massachusetts band Dropkick Murphys. This Irish-American band is well known for their patronage of the Boston Red Sox  and Boston Bruins. In fact, I was told by a friend and alumnus of Boston College that they are not allowed to perform on BC's campus anymore due to the raucous crowds that inherently gather to celebrate Boston/Massachusetts heritage.

Ironically enough, the Dropkick Murphys decline the return of BC's adoration - why else would they have covered the fight song of one of BC's most hated rivals?

Tonight, at 8pm EST on ESPN the Notre Dame Fighting Irish take on the Boston College Eagles in Chestnut Hill in a rivalry bout known as the Holy War. In what was hopefully a prelude to this evening's contest, the Notre Dame hockey team defeated Boston College last night by a score of 4-1. While the win did not fully exact revenge from last year's loss in the national championship game to the Eagles the win was huge for an Irish team that had yet to defeat a ranked opponent and that will likely not face another such opponent until January.

Without any further digression, I present to you "Victory" by the Dropkick Murphys.

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