To combat this interminable stretch of baseball-less-ness, some of the staff members offered to submit the music they listen to/associate with the Mariners. Unsurprisingly, there is a lot of sadness and melancholy. Rightfully, there is no Macklemore. Eric and Zach overachieved, and created their own independent playlists, while the rest of us just included a few songs. Is there a specific song, or type of music that you associate with this team, other than the cartoonish wah-wah-wahhh sound of disappointment? Let us know in the comments.
“Why do they always get better?”
“Same old trashiners.”
“Why can’t they win at home in front of big crowds?”
“Why can’t they win on the road?”
“Good ol’ slump bustin’ Mariners, making bad teams looks good.”
“So now they can hit, but can’t pitch?”
“So now they can pitch, but can’t hit?”
“When does Seahawks preseason start?”
“Fans don’t even show up against big road team crowds, how can the team win without loud fans?”
“The team just doesn’t have a winning culture.”
“Hello darkness my old friend.”
Hello, sad Mariners fan. If you’ve thought, said, or heard any of these statements or questions during a lonesome and depressing walk or ride home following a Mariners loss over the years, then this playlist is for you. You know, the nights where you’ve had 5 or 6 beers and are sad drunk (or just plain sober sad) and you are despondently riding the bus or light rail home and need to blast something in your headphones to drown out the drunk UW students and their terrible hot takes on what’s wrong with the team. These songs are for you and will fit your sorrowful mood accordingly.
I bridged a few more genres than I usually would for a playlist. I am a bit of a purist and do not like genre casserole when it comes to music mixes. But, if you’ll excuse a bit of goth and a bit of folk singer mixed in with your sad bastard 90’s and 00’s slowcore and emo, then I think you’ll find the unifying themes of world weariness and depression come through strongly throughout.
You’ll notice a heavy presence from Jason Molina, the songwriter behind Songs: Ohia and Magnolia Electric Company. That’s because something about the despair in his music has soothed me many a time after a Mariners loss, and through other losses in life. Molina sadly drank himself to death in 2013, which is also very fitting and dark given his large presence here. Molina’s spiritual predecessor, Townes Van Zandt, also felt very appropriate to include.
Elsewhere we have healthy doses of the mopey sad bastard music I spent all of my teens and twenties listening to. You can hold yourself, rocking back and forth in your chair while blasting Codeine at an uncomfortable volume. You can pinpoint exactly in your regrets where you fucked up with Pedro the Lion. And you can stare off wistfully into the middle distance with the Appleseed Cast, pondering your existence and your wasted youth.
Hope you enjoy the mix and I hope it helps soothe the pain in some way.
I’ll raise Eric’s panoply of mopey sad bastard music with a bevy of songs that work their way through the travails of unrequited love to the despair of abject heartbreak, that bask in bittersweet reflectiveness and dabble in tempered optimism, ultimately imploring that we stop worrying and just enjoy the ride – in short, the musical embodiment of our relationship with the Seattle Mariners.
No baseball team is perfect, but these twenty tracks are pretty close.
"Two Shades of Blue" by Chet Atkins and Suzy Bogguss- Jerry painted a beautiful scene, with bright eyes and emerald green/but the tears of the tendons each day have washed all the colors away/now all I can see.../Is two shades of blue.
"Visionary" - Farruko
Yes, this is Leonys Martin's walk-up song and yes, I realize that I am naught but a cliche of myself.
"Send It Up" - Kanye West
I've started timing my treadmill runs for when the Mariners are playing, since I've found that the time passes much easier that way. Sometimes I'll tune into the broadcast, but it's more fun to pretend to be the Safeco Field DJ and curate a playlist of pump-up songs with a heavy, driving beat. This song came on shuffle when Clayton Kershaw was pitching in Game 1 of last year's NLDS. It was badass and perfect, and is now the song I like to play whenever the Ms starter first takes the mound.
No sad songs here, because when the team is doing poorly I try to do anything other than sit there and be sad and think about baseball.
I initially split these into happy and sad songs, but realized that all my sad songs were sort of rueful/wistful/melancholy rather than outright sad, and all my happy songs were measured, celebrating flawed love or making the best of a situation. Which, I guess, really encapsulates the feeling of being a Mariners fan, for me.
“Lost On You” - LP
This song is about investing a lot of time in something or someone only to have them break your heart. “Let’s raise a glass to all the things I’ve lost on you/Tell me are they lost on you” is a lyric that pretty much sums up my experience of pouring tons of time and effort into this team, only to have them let me down time and time again.
“Issues” - Julia Michaels
This song was the first fissure in my happy/sad dichotomy, because it celebrates being with someone who is as screwed up as you are. “I got issues/but you got ‘em too/so give ‘em all to me and I’ll give mine to you.” Am I broken because I’m a Mariners fan? Or am I a Mariners fan because I’m broken? But ultimately I tipped over into seeing it as mostly positive: “Bask in the glory of all our problems/cause we’ve got the kind of love it takes to solve them.” We are each of us angels with only one wing, and only through holding hands whatever whatever.
“Pride and Joy” - Brandi Carlile (Live at Benaroya Hall, natch)
“All in all it wasn’t bad/All in all it wasn’t good/but I still care.” I’ve always interpreted this song as an adult child casting back to their roots, asserting they don’t need anyone’s approval to live their own life, but at the same time wondering “do I make you proud? Do you get me now?” And I feel a little like this is the Mariners talking to me: this is who I am, deal with it. And I just realized I haven’t picked a single actually-happy song yet, but man the strings at the end of this version and that build when the guitars come back in; it feels cathartic for both parties.
“Love is Blindness” - Jack White, not U2, get the heck out of here with that
Has to be the angsty, keening Jack White version to really celebrate the feeling of loving something despite the fact that is might literally eat you alive. Speaking of which:
“Ever Fallen in Love” - The Buzzcocks
Who knew the Buzzcocks were Mariners fans?
* Bonus Tyler O'Neil content/added trade bait for all the MLB front office personnel reading this (Big hands! Teachability! Possible career as your stadium's organ player, if he flops! Very definitely worth your bounce-back candidate pitcher!)