For the NFL Season: The Overpowering Awfulness of Houston Oiler Fight Songs, Collected
Everyone's happy, happy, happy with where the Houston Texans are headed into the 2012 season -- the roster battles are largely confined to low-profile back-up positions, the division's weak and a Super Bowl beckons -- but this city has been there before.
We've gone through it with the Texans themselves, with seasons where they seemed to be poised on the brink of the edge of the beginnings of the dawn of greatness.
And we've seen it way before that, back in the Luv Ya Blue days.
Houston went wild over the ragged collection of scruffy overachievers who made up the Luv Ya Blue crew, packing Astrodome pep rallies after crushing defeats, sonically booming that old facility whenever Earl Campbell would tear down the sidelines or flatten some misbegotten defender possessed of cruel tackle-making dreams.
Oh, and it meant music.
For some reason, music was a big part of celebrating the Oilers. Everyone with a guitar and even a poorly developed talent for rhyming headed into a studio to slap something together and get on the radio.
As far as tunes, you could rip off the Beatles' "Love Me Do" or the Miami Dolphins' fight song or whatever was handy.
Or you could come up with your own stuff.
Many tried, as we said.
And now two Houstonians going by the name of Vinyl Ranch -- Dave Wrangler and our own Craig Hlavaty -- have compiled some of the best/worst/available examples of the legendary oeuvre by such artists as Donna & The Dolls, Carl Mauck, Mack Hayes and the Janicek Polka Band.
Among their finds: 5. "Earl Campbell (He's In The End Zone)" Jimmie Rodgers & the Tom Kerley Band
To give credit where it's due, this is a livelier number than some of these other dirges, with yodeling to spare.
4. "Bum's Promise" Tom Cantell & the Newton Minus Dink
In case you can never get enough of C.W. McCall and his Convoy/CB Radio body of work, "Bum's Promise" brings it all back to you with a semi-narrated tale of the famous night when the coach promised -- in vain -- to kick in the door of some sumbitchin' team from up north.
The opening stanza says it all, or at least it says as much as we could get through:
Well, I was hanging out in Houston just before the season died The thrill of victory left me so I hung my head and cried Then a vision came to me and I lifted up my head Stood a prophet in the Astrodome and this is what he said...
As you can guess, "what he said" entailed a lot of empty talk about kicking.
3. "Houston Oilers Disco (Vinyl Ranch Edit)" Donna & The Dolls
"Look out, football, here we come" it says, for some reason, and then goes into a disco-ized version of the fight song. Inspiring.
2. "Houston Oilers Polka" Janicek Polka Band
An instrumental sure to rock every Sons of Hermann hall south of Centerville.
1. "Luv Ya Blue" Mack Hayes
Any resemblance to Liverpool mop-tops is purely coincidental. And profitable.
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