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Whether it’s the national anthem played before every game, the music ballplayers select to accent their walk to home plate or the seventh inning stretch when fans sing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” music is an integral part of the baseball experience.
To celebrate the soundtrack of baseball, the Grammy Museum proudly presents “Take Me Out to the Ball Game: Popular Music and the National Pastime.” Edward Meeker and The Edison Orchestra’s original 1908 recording of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame this year.
The exhibit opened on March 14 when Bob Santelli, founding executive director of the Grammy Museum and the exhibit’s curator, discussed the history of music in baseball with Barry Zito at the museum’s Clive Davis Theater as part of the museum’s public programs. The exhibit will run through baseball season until fall 2019.
“Take Me Out to the Ball Game: Popular Music and the National Pastime” offers insight and historical reference for the history of music in baseball. The exhibit takes museum visitors on a journey that starts before the 20th century, when interest in baseball-themed music was fostered through the sales of sheet music, then explains the rise of baseball songs becoming a part of a new era of American music in the early 1900s and discusses modern popular music being a central part of players preparing to take the field and excite the fans.
All forms of music – including pop, jazz, country, rhythm and blues, and rock and roll – embraced America’s baseball passion and are reflected throughout the exhibit.
“Baseball and popular music have been practically inseparable for the past century and a half,” said Santelli. “Hundreds of songs have been written about the national pastime. And today, with ballplayers personally selecting walk-up-to-the-batter’s-box-music and with retired players like Barry Zito and Bernie Williams actually launching music careers, the baseball-music connection is stronger than ever.”
Exhibit highlights include sheet music from the game’s early years, handwritten lyrics to baseball classics, special edition Fender guitars, MLB sportscaster Harry Caray’s microphone and limited-edition posters, vinyl records, and photographs.
The Grammy Museum is located at 800 W. Olympic Blvd. For information and tickets, visit grammymuseum.org.
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