There has been a long-established relationship between radio and baseball—and now in a different way than before. With the San Francisco Giants competing in this year’s World Series, two of the city’s radio stations have banned artist Lorde’s song “Royals” to avoid any promotion of the opposing team, the Kansas City...well...we know.
In an article by USA Today, KOIT program director Brian Figula said, “Our listeners told us to do it, so we did it.” How democratically darling of San Francisco to serve the community.
For the Royals, the radio has served as a microphone to remind the world of their name. What’s not to love about using a Grammy-winning song to cheer on your team just in time for the biggest baseball games of the year?
Perhaps the fact that the context in which “royals” is used has little relevance to America’s favorite pastime. Imagine team fans chanting, “We’ll never be Royals!” Not particularly well-suited for the purpose—unless they’re simultaneously suffering an identity crisis.
We can, however, crown Kansas City for creativity. The news may not be buzzing about Royal successes in California, but according to the Kansas City Star several parodies have been released with more fitting lyrics, the most popular saying. “‘Cause you'll never beat the Royals . . .That kind of loss just ain't for us.”
Not surprisingly, much of the West Coast media is exposing a similar idea devout to the San Francisco Giants with lyrics more like, “And we’re gonna beat the Royals; there’s no way to stop us.”
So after banning Lorde’s hit from the radio for the mention of the word “royals” (though contextually incorrect), Giants fans reassemble the song to repeat Roy-- they who must not be named, just as many times? Sure, the context has been modified, but why do we devote so much time to our opponents? Fans of both sides are exhausting their breath faming the “Royals” name, without mention of the Giants at all.
Come on, San Francisco. Reach for that creativeness and eccentricity that is your city. Let’s not forget we have “San Francisco Anthem” and E-40’s “Yay Area” that we can twist to fit our team rather than wasting our breath on whomever is up against us.
Yes, it is a song, but our tendency to confuse others’ business with our own empowerment is sort of a cultural glitch. Trying too hard to impose negativity on our competition is a waste of time and energy that could otherwise be invested as motivation to drive the Giants home.