We’ve mostly enjoyed our (coming up on) 8 years of idiocy. When we started this shit-for-brains site in June of 2008, we had no idea how many different gags we’d have, or how many people would come along for the ride. But other than posts on Hockeenight’s birthday each year, we’ve never really reflected too much on the dumb things we’ve done. Expect a lot more of that in the coming weeks, as we watch Hockeenight’s life flash before our eyes.
Today, MightyMikeD takes time off from his duties as roadie for Sir Reg to give you the history of the Hockeenight Playoff Anthem, including the 2016 Anthem. Any resemblance between his recounting and the actual events is purely coincidental. So without any further ado…
Everyone needs a theme song. Theme songs rule. They let you know that a badass is entering the area. Darth Vader had the foreboding Imperial March, Indiana Jones his stirring Raiders March and the A-Team their theme that isn’t a March.
Pro wrestlers know this better than anyone.. Jim Ross bellows “OH MA GAWD THAT’S STONE COLD’S MUSIC!!” and enter Steve Austin to the sound of breaking glass, showers of beer and the Disturbed. The Undertaker’s “Grim Reaper” sends chills down the spine as he stalks in (and let’s try to forget that he also used Limp Bizkit and Kid Rock for a while).
Hockey embraces this concept already with individual team goal songs which range from the terrible, to the bad, to the really, really annoying. But that’s post-event. Where is hockey’s entrance music or walk-up songs? Where is the tune that is going to announce that the big, bad dog is coming out to play?
Cometh the hour, cometh the idiots. Step forward, Hockeenight and CathyMay15.
2011: Eliminated in 1st Round (fuck you, Burrows)
Down 0-3 to the Presidents Trophy winning Canucks the 8th seed Hawks were in a dark place. Elimination on home ice to a loathed rival beckoned. But out of this darkness soars the voice of a Norwegian teenager in a key.. no, keys entirely of her own devising. Fork and CT had surmised that it was going to take something special to come back from this and spurred on by the Very First Blackhawks Playoff Anthem the team nearly did it. In OT of Game 7 Patrick Sharp missed the goal by a considerably smaller margin than CathyMay15 misses that high note right before the guitar solo.
Funfact: This could also be seen as the start of a tradition where the Blackhawks rightfully reclaim other team’s traditions. See also AAAAAARRRRROOOOOOOO.
Additional Funfact: CathyMay15 herself said in a later interview that she put the videos up to get feedback on her voice from YouTube comments. That could be the worst and most terrifying idea I’ve heard in my entire life.
2012: Eliminated in 1st Round (fuck you Mike Smith/Raffi Torres/Yotes fans)
This didn’t debut until the Hawks were, again in a deep dark hole. Mike Smith was slashing and diving and diving and slashing and also stopping ridiculous amounts of rubber. Need some Archer-level shit to get out of this one. Unfortunately the Hawks were more Cyril. Sadly, worse was to come as Raffi Torres would attempt to decapitate Marian Hossa the very next game. I’m not sure I want to think about this series anymore.
Funfact: Fuck it, it’s a ringtone from Archer. It’s the very embodiment of fun.
2013: Total Victory.. and we suddenly got famous.
This is the point at which my involvement began. And, continuing the theme, the video (rather than the song) came out of a dark place too: namely having hours and hours and hours to kill before Game 7 against the Wings. The story of how Holiday Road became a Playoff Anthem phenomenon has already been told by our friend Mike Shoro of Second City Hockey http://www.secondcityhockey.com/2013/7/23/4533866/a-long-way-down-the-holiday-road
From my point of view, being six hours ahead of Chicago, I had an entire day off to worry about a Game 7 that was going to start in the early hours of the following morning. So I decided to kill time by making a video to accompany the song to pay tribute to the incredible regular season that the Hawks had had. There was also the idea that this could serve as a Eulogy if things went tits-up. As It turned out, they didn’t. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1cVmhPlmBM
The song itself was a legitimate phenom by then, even being played at the UC right before that Game 7. It’s on Lindsay Buckingham’s Wikipedia page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holiday_Road
Fortunately, the video (well over 10,000 views on YouTube) got used a lot more in the run in to 17 seconds.. and boy was it good . This was kind of the high-water mark and the hockey-related thing I’m proudest of.
Funfact: Doing a Google Image search for “Gorilla Salad” to get a video of a large primate eating leaves is best done with “SafeSearch” on. The things I saw. Oh, the things….
2014: WCF (Fuck you that guy who always scored in Game 7)
This one was the first premeditated Playoff Anthem. Fork and I had several “Creative Discussions” about this one ahead of the playoffs. We came up with this. I’m most proud of Patrick Sharp appearing to lip-sync about his balls. It was also fun to put elements of the previous Cup win and the Winter Classic into it. The Hawks came up short, but their Balls were well attended
Funfact: Johnny Oduya also lip-syncs “Dirty big balls” towards the end of this video. We also got to play it a hell of a lot.
2015: Moar Total Victory .. and increased Production Values
This one may be my favourite. Hockeenight have a very, very long (are we still doing “Phrasing”) relationship with the British Muscle Bear scene. It all came together in this one. Bearforce 1 made a run to the Eurovision finals in the same year. We combined the two and ran with it. Part of the fun was knowing just how much it would annoy the Sports Mockery/Barstool cretins who we really, really don’t want to have in on the joke. Then Bearforce 1 got in on the joke and thought our use of their song as a Playoff Anthem was really cool (I’d been worried about getting a Cease & Desist). I ended up on an excellent Puckcast with Robert (of Bearforce 1) , who reiterated how much they enjoyed having their music used as a hockey Playoff Anthem.
The Hawks won the Cup, we had a whale of a time doing this and then.. well. I’m retired.
We hope you enjoyed all of them so far and we hope you enjoy this year’s effort: I’m happy to pass the baton to a new video-make-type-person who has about a million more skills at it than me. It’s been an extraordinary pleasure to have been involved thus far. This years’ effort is truly, truly wonderful and I hope you all enjoy hearing it a lot!
Preeee-senting this years’ Hockeenight Playoff Anthem, by our good friend Dylan Connolly @DCONN24
Fro is the worst.