Tailgating Essentials: Part Deux

With the football season in full-swing, it’s time for another update on tailgating and couchgating. The last issue of News from the Big Dipper dealt with tailgating gizmos that no self-respecting football fan should live without. We also looked at some tailgating recipes from Gordo’s that are guaranteed to give your team an advantage on game day.

This time we’re moving on to more tailgating essentials: music and even more food ideas.

Let’s start with music. Every tailgate party needs tunes, but it’s very important…no, it’s critical to remember that some songs work for tailgating parties and some don’t.

Maybe you heard about the ill-advised decision that Cincinnati Bengals made with regard to their “official” pregame, in-game and post-game sprit song. They chose Katy Perry’s latest pop song – “Roar” – and to say the fans reacted negatively is like saying the crash of the Titanic was a little boat accident.

The news reports touched on this little problem in music selection. “Perry’s song is about empowerment and standing up for one’s self, but as it is played, it did not work as a pump up song. The crowds started screaming a roar of their own loud enough to drown out Perry’s voice that they did not want to hear. The Bengals have since been forced to reevaluate when they can play the song.”

There’s a valuable lesson here for anyone choosing the music for their tailgate party. This is a football game people! Where big, mean-looking guys try to run over each other. It’s not a little girl slumber party! (apologies to little girls and their slumber parties). Nobody wants to hear Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus or Barney the Purple Dinosaur at a tailgate party.

As the press coverage around the Katy Perry debacle noted, “Most arenas play the rock music that has been played for several years such as Guns N Roses, Black Sabbath, AC/DC and more, because it is what fans are used to. When a song by someone like Katy Perry comes over the loudspeakers fans are going to be extremely surprised and the recent backlash is certainly expected.”

Can’t Miss Music for Tailgating

Here are a few tailgate tips on music that you can’t go wrong with.

  • Just about anything up tempo from Bruce Springsteen works for a tailgate party. We especially like the early stuff from the Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle. Put on “Rosalita” and see how fast the crowd starts jumpin.
  • In spite of the fact, or perhaps BECAUSE of the fact that the tune “Praise You” was first heard as a commercial, everyone digs the hook on this song. Grab some Fat Boy Slim and stand back.
  • Tony Keith is a big ‘ol boy who used to play college football and his rollicking homage to drinking while mobile – “Solo Cup” – has become a tailgate anthem.
  • Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen is a must for any tailgate party due to its chest-beating message.
  • Johnny Cash was the bad to the bone (except to June) and his “Ring of Fire” is a must for tailgating.
  • Superstition” by Stevie Wonder to simply good Ju Ju for your team and the fast-approaching game. “When you believe in things that you don’t understand”…etc.
  • Anything by Van Halen works. You can’t go wrong with “Panama” or “Jump”
  • Pink’s “Get the Party Started” is iconic for the tailgate.
  • Anything by the late blues singer/guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan works. We especially like “If the House is Rockin, Don’t Bother Knockin” and “Pride and Joy.”
  • Rock of Ages” by Def Leppard is the quintessential tailgate party tune. Slap the baby on and your friends will have restrain you from running out on the field and challenging the other team!

Music, or rather, the right kind of music can really help pump up the attendees of a tailgate party and if you choose music from one of these artists, you’ve done your part to rouse the rabble.

No Matter Where You Are, It’s All About the Food

The food at tailgate parties tends to run the gamut of amazing to barely edible. Plus, the type of food served varies quite a bit from one part of the country to another.

Say you at a tailgate party just outside the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field in Green Bay Wisconsin. Packer fans are some of the most ardent celebrants in professional football. They start tailgating a few days before the game. If you’re cooking at a Packer tailgater, the odd are greater than 99% you will be cooking some bratwurst. These brats in a bun are made even more intense by a heaping helping of Gordo’s Cheese Dip drizzled on top. The Cheesehead nation loves Gordo’s.

If you’re tailgating in Big Easy, New Orleanians are likely to have gumbo, crawfish and shrimp on the menu. There is nothing better than having some Gordo’s available for dipping these fried shrimp in.

A Chicago Bears tailgate party will most likely have some ribs, brats and lots of those giant pretzels, which are perfect for dipping in Gordo’s Cheese Dip.  The point is simple, there’s no tailgate food in any part of the U.S. that can’t be improved by a container or two of Gordo’s.

Here are some easy-to-make and delicious recipes for tailgating with Gordo’s:

The best tailgate parties are those where everyone gets enough food and drink to make through the entire game without having to resort to the concession stand. While this is theoretically possible, football fans are usually pretty good eaters and they might be tempted to munch on a few snacks while the game is going such as: popcorn, peanuts, hot dogs, (more) beer, (even more) nachos, a few giant pretzels and some ice cream in the third quarter.

Fortunately for your guests, you will probably have more food for them when they make it back to the tailgate location. Hey, you can’t expect them to drive home on an empty stomach!






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