If the phrase “Long Live Rock!” is drowning out the declaration “Play ball!” it might have to do with the way The Who has been in the news as of late. The group’s mastermind, Pete Townshend, has been front and center with his long anticipated autobiography, “Who I Am,” currently positioned at No. 3 on the New York Times best sellers list, while a 36-city U.S. tour that will see the group perform its ambitious rock opera “Quadrophenia” kicks off Nov. 1. Now the Who’s music has become the offical anthem of the World Series being aired on Fox Sports.
The deal is the latest coup by music publisher Spirit Music Group headed by Mark Fried, who has been instrumental in reanimating Townshend’s music for modern audiences across a variety of platforms.
For the series between the Giants and the Tigers, signature tunes like “Going Mobile,” “Behind Blue Eyes,” “I Can See For Miles” and “Bargain” will be edited and matched to in-game play, as well as used in game promos, during highlight shows and in custom web content.
The deal was conceived to incorporate a mix of appropriate tracks and re-mixes into the broadcast, and look for creative ways to embed the music organically across all of Fox’s platforms. In addition to active licensing of the songs, Fox Sports will be helping promote The Who brand via frequent sportscaster mentions of the music and the band’s upcoming tour, featured use of the band’s images, album art and web and social links on Fox’ website.
According to Spirit president Fried, “The music of The Who is as powerful and propulsive today as when it was first introduced, so using their songs to soundtrack one of the country’s premiere sporting events seems a perfect fit.”