The Final Four is set, so now it is time to start dancing down to San Antonio. Here is a Daily News Final Four playlist featuring the sounds of San Antonio as well as a few numbers related to the Final Four participants to get you two-stepping toward River City for the big weekend:
1. Charley Pride — Is Anybody Goin’ To San Antone
Pride’s sports connection is with baseball, not basketball — the country superstar pitched in the minors and has been a part-owner of the Texas Rangers since 2010. This 1970 smash hit, Pride’s third country No. 1, quickly became an anthem for the Final Four host city.
2. George Strait — Remember the Alamo
While this 1998 track isn’t among Strait’s many hits, there’s gotta be an Alamo song on the Final Four playlist. No trip to San Antone is complete without a visit to The Alamo. Strait gets the edge over Johnny Cash’s own “Remember the Alamo” (a different song) because he grew up outside San Antonio in Pearsall.
3. Selena — No Me Queda Mas
Can’t have a San Antonio-themed playlist without the Queen of Tejano. Selena grew up in nearby Corpus Christi, but played many memorable shows in San Antonio, including at the Alamodome, the site of the Final Four, in 1994. Most of this video was filmed at the San Antonio Amtrack station.
4. Flaco Jimenez — Ay Te Dejo En San Antonio
San Antonio produced the Tex-Mex accordion king, so here he is with this Grammy-winning 1986 classic, which was written by his father, Santiago.
5. Texas Tornados — A Little Bit Is Better Than Nada
Can’t have a San Antonio playlist without River City’s own supergroup. San Antone products Jimenez, Doug Sahm and Augie Meyers teamed up with Freddy Fender to produce one of Texas’ legendary combos. It makes the cut here despite being featured in the opening credits in a golf movie, 1996’s “Tin Cup.”
6. Patsy Cline — San Antonio Rose
The city’s first anthem was originally written and recorded by Bob Wills in the ’40s. Then just about every country superstar who passed through Nashville or Texas took a crack at it. Of those many covers, the late, great Patsy Cline’s 1961 version is among the best.
7. Alejandro Escovedo — San Antonio Rain
This Texas troubadour recently returned to his hometown of San Antonio after being based in Austin for many years. Perhaps this 2012 tune, produced by longtime David Bowie associate Tony Visconti, sowed the seeds for his homecoming.
8. The Monkees — What Am I Doing Hangin’ Round
What, you ask, are the Monkees doing on a Texas Final Four playlist? Guitarist Mike Nesmith was born in Houston, and got serious about music while attending San Antonio College, cutting his teeth in River City honky tonks. Plus, this 1967 tune repeatedly mentions San Antone in the chorus.
9. The Sonics — Cinderella
These guys are from the Pacific Northwest but are here to represent Loyola-Chicago, which tied the Cinderella record as the lowest seed (11th) to reach a Final Four.
10. Smashing Pumpkins — 1979
Pumpkins guitarist James Iha is a Loyola-Chicago alum. It’s been a big year for Iha: Not only are his Ramblers in the Final Four, but he recently ended a 16-year feud with Great Pumpkin Billy Corgan and is about to embark on a lucrative reunion tour with the Chicago band.
11. Wilt “The Stilt” Chamberlain — By The River
Didn’t see too many UK musical connections, so The Jayhawks were considered; they are from Minneapolis but did play a pre-Super Bowl party this year. But then the greatest Jayhawk of all came through. Chamberlain recorded this single in 1960, and actually holds his own as a singer. He never did like “The Stilt” nickname, so Wilt probably wasn’t pleased it ended up on the record label.
12. Madonna — True Blue
Ms. Ciccone attended the University of Michigan on a dance scholarship but dropped out in 1978 to move to New York. Perhaps she had her old school in mind when writing this No. 3 smash from 1986.
13. Iggy Pop — Lust For Life
Ann Arbor native Jim Osterberg attended Michigan for two years before dropping out in 1966. While the closest sports connection in Pop’s career is probably “Search and Destroy” being used in a sneaker commercial, check out this David Bowie collaboration from 1977, which has been used in just about every other kind of commercial.
14. Toby Keith — Red Solo Cup
While Keith’s stint at Villanova was a brief one, the university eventually did grant him an honorary degree. Keith doesn’t have any hoops songs but he did play football, and he has plenty of songs about beer, which goes along with the party atmosphere of Final Four weekend.
15. Jim Croce — I Got a Name
Croce, from nearby Upper Darby, Pa., graduated from Villanova in 1965. While there, he honed his chops playing in cover bands at frat parties. The closest sports song he had was “Roller Derby Queen,” so instead here is one of his biggest hits.
16. Luther Vandross — One Shining Moment.
The definitive version, though Nova fans will no doubt recall Ne-Yo’s 2016 debut fondly. Composer David Barrett is from East Lansing so perhaps he is rooting against the Wolverines.
For these and more Final Four related tunes, check out the playlist on Spotify.
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