AJ Daulerio's Cultural Oddsmaker runs every Friday. Email him to let him know what you think.
Growing up, my Little League team was sponsored by either a local dry cleaning service, a pizzeria or a plump, mustached realtor. The best of that lot, obviously, was the pizzeria, Giuseppes, which would be very generous come playoff time and let us drain their soda fountain in trying to concoct the perfect Suicide — Sunkist, A&W and Welch's Grape ... Crazy!
This memory crawled into my head, obviously, after reading about Motorhead's sponsorship of a youth soccer team in England. I can't tell who's cooler — Motorhead or the coach who contacted them. Or perhaps the coach is savvy enough to realize that his team's jerseys will probably fetch about $200 a pop at vintage shops. Think about it — random intramural European youth soccer league jersey PLUS a Motorhead sponsorship logo on the back? Find me one greasy hipster who wouldn't drain their bank account to snag that shit.
I smell a trend. Heavy metal bands historically have had problems individualizing themselves through the years — I mean, remember when Ozzy and Judas Priest started teasing their hair with Aqua Net? Bad news — so it's not out of the question that more bands could possibly use this as a means of self-promotion. This week, I'm handicapping the bands that could follow suit. This is a dream come true for me.
So I'm putting on my Chuck Klosterman jersey, ironing on my Damage Inc. backpatch and calculating the odds on the next heavy metal bands to sponsor little kids' sports teams.
Bang your head with me, after this jump.
Team: Lyceum Alpinum Cricket Team
Moderately famous in the U.S. in the pre-glam/post-Brit metal era, Switzerland's super fantastic rockers were best known for covers of Alice Cooper's "School's Out," Sweet's "Ballroom Blitz" and for the inconceivably lush afro and guttural yelps of lead singer Marc Storace. Once popular with the nerdiest of tech shop metalheads, Krokus has been relegated to the odd little reunion tours in dingy European outdoor festivals. So a little positive publicity brought on by sponsoring a 15-and-under cricket team could be just what they need to recapture the primal energy of "Stayed Awake All Night." Your Econoline van has been warned.
Team: Yomimuri Kendo League
Yesss. The only thing better to come out of Japan in the last 35 years is Katamari and possibly that weird disease that causes Japanese ladies to orgasm if you accidentally rub their elbow. Amazingly, Loudness is still touring and recording records, and most recently played at B. B. King's Blues Bar this past summer. What better way to ensure their place in Japanese metal history then to hitch their wagons to an up and coming kendo team? Rock N Roll Crazy Night. You are the hero.
Team: Boonville Ny Bath Rams Wrestling Club
I'll admit it. There was a period of time where I thought Dokken was the second coming of Led Zeppelin. Under Lock and Key seemed like a sonic masterpiece when I was 13. Then they came out and did that "Dream Warriors" song for Nightmare on Elm Street 3, and I figured out that, well, they're kinda wimpy. But not now. Have you seen George Lynch lately? Dude's been taking the Carrot Top pills.
Team: San Francisco Enchantees Girls Basketball Program
This Bay Area thrash band is solely responsible for turning Reebok hightops from a basketball shoe to moshing gear. They at least owe something back to all of those 80s teenagers whose parents spent good money buying their kids $130 Reebok pumps, only to have them hit the hardwood and suddenly be accused of being burn outs. Now, it's time for Testament to give back.
Team: Anderson Township Orioles Little League Team
Before he was strapping on buzzsaw codpieces and hurling pieces of meat from the stage, W.A.S.P lead singer Black Lawless was pretty damn good baseball player and spent some time in the Cincinnati Reds organization. He was recently charged with assaulting a security guard, so you know Lawless still has some fight left in him. Better way to channel that energy is to adopt a Little League team. If nothing else, one crafty young reliever should at least adopt "Animal (Fuck Like a Beast)" as his march-from-the-bullpen song. Do it for Blackie.