Why America's pastime is the perfect songwriting lens for The Baseball Project - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart
The Baseball Project on World Cafe
The Baseball Project
Studio Session
  • "Journeyman"
  • "New Oh in Town"
  • "The Yips"

Since Major League Baseball’s beginnings in 1877, over 20,000 ballplayers have suited up, adding to a rich history full of colorful characters, scapegoats, and curses. Over four albums, The Baseball Project has captured some of the sport’s best stories in song.

It may sound like a lark at first. Members of R.E.M. and The Dream Syndicate banded together to ask: “What if we only wrote songs about baseball?”

As it turns out, America’s pastime is an apt backdrop for songs about winners, losers, and misfits. The band — comprising Peter Buck, Mike Mills, Steve Wynn, Scott McCaughey, and Linda Pitmon — have just released their latest album, Grand Salami Time, and it covers a lot of ground. A nod to Seattle Mariners broadcaster Dave Niehaus’ signature home run call, the album includes odes to young superstars like Shohei Ohtani, as well as a song about the dreaded yips, a phenomenon where ballplayers struggle to complete the most mundane of tasks.

In this session, Wynn and McCaughey join us to talk about the stories behind the album, plus live performances from The Baseball Project.

Episode Playlist

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