As you can see here at Gavel Media, we’ve made it very clear how we feel about Boston. In the wake of the horrific events that transpired on Marathon Monday, the country and the world have united in solidarity with this awesome city that we’ve all come to know and love. Events like “The Last 5” and “Wear Boston Day” are popping up all over the place, and incidents like what happened at the TD Garden last night are abundant.
What better way to celebrate our beloved city than through music? For decades, musicians across the country have reflected, written, and sang about the great qualities that Boston has to offer: the dirty Charles River, the Red Sox, diversity, the Boston Tea Party, the Red Sox, Tom Brady, and the Red Sox.
But we know that Boston is more than just what are in its songs. It’s more than catchy lyrics, a perfectly constructed rhythm, or a unique combination of instruments. It’s where our friends live. It’s the place that has given us some of the best years of our lives. It’s a city that has welcomed us with open arms and one that has clearly demonstrated its resiliency, steadfastness, and immense amount of unity. It’s our home. This week’s TBT playlist goes out to you, Boston.
10) "Boston" – Augustana
Although slow and mellow might not be what we need right now, Augustana manages to portray what Boston has given us from first sight: a chance at a new life. For those of us who aren’t from New England, are looking to escape the confines of high school or a sheltered hometown, or just need a fresh start, Boston is exactly the welcoming and loving city that we need.
9) "So Good (The Boston Song)" – Vince Sneed and Eytan Nicholson
It may be a cheesy pop song that I could’ve written myself, but the point is that it’s our cheesy pop song. Somehow, Vince Sneed and Eytan Nicholson managed to capture everything there is to love about Boston in less than four minutes, and that deserves a ton of credit. Plus, it’s fabulously catchy.
8) "Rock and Roll Band" – Boston
A band called Boston from Boston singing about Boston? It can’t get much better than that. It’s obvious that Boston has a killer music scene, something this classic confirms by saying “Everybody’s waitin’, gettin’ crazy, anticipating love and music.” From the House of Blues to the TD Garden, the Paradise Rock Club to Orpheum Theater, Boston music soars above the rest and is definitely a point of pride for our city.
7) "Where Everybody Knows Your Name" – Gary Portnay
Everybody knows that Boston is home to the highly-rated sitcom Cheers, which emulates the hometown feel of Boston that many of us have come to know and love, no matter where you’re from. On Monday, this became especially true, as the citizens of Beantown came together in unity. No matter where you went, you felt like you mattered.
6) "Tessie" – Dropkick Murphys
The longtime anthem of the Red Sox, “Tessie” is a must-memorize for any true Boston fan. Without "Tessie," the Boston Americans wouldn’t have won the 1903 World Series. Who knows if we would’ve broken the Curse of the Bambino without it in 2004? Without "Tessie," Boston might not have as much holding it together.
5) "Dirty Water" – The Standells
Another Red Sox anthem, “Dirty Water” isn’t afraid to declare love for the dirty, nasty, brown, but all the more lovable Charles River that runs through our city. Whether you’re into kayaking, sailing, rowing, crossing bridges, or just using it for the perfect Instagram picture, it’s hard to imagine Boston without its lifeline: our favorite grimy body of water.
4) "Sweet Caroline" – Neil Diamond
For those of you who have never been to Fenway for a Red Sox game, let me tell you, there’s nothing in the world that compares to the feeling you get when the entire stadium is belting out this song in the middle of the eighth inning. It speaks to the character of the people of Boston and is truly a sign of the love that Red Sox fans and people all over the country have for this city.
3) "Shipping Up to Boston" – Dropkick Murphys
Probably the most-used phrase by college students in Boston, this song is the essence of the city. Although I don’t think any of us will ever understand why the singer’s wooden leg is in Boston (or why he has a wooden leg in the first place), it reminds us of coming home again. Also I’m pretty sure it’s the only song at sporting events that never fails to hype people up.
2) "The Blood of Cuchulainn" – Mychael and Jeff Danna
The theme song of one of the most iconic Boston movies of all time, “The Boondock Saints,” this instrumental is essential to Boston. It’s more than just a movie theme. It speaks to Boston’s Irish heritage, to Boston’s history, and in the end gives us a sentiment of love and pride for Beantown.
1) "For Boston" – the Fight Song of Boston College
How could this be a Boston playlist without our theme song at the top spot? In the midst of terror and tragedy, “For Boston” is appropriate now more than ever before. We’re proud of all that our city has to offer. We’re proud of how its citizens have come together, united on the same front, both in Boston and all over the world. We’re proud that this is our city, our home, our sanctuary, and that no matter what anyone does to change that, they will be met with a strength and unity never seen before, for here all are one. Boston forever.