Hear Ben Gibbard’s Playful Ode to Ex-Mariner Ichiro Suzuki
The Death Cab for Cutie frontman, soon to release a solo album, recorded this peppy tribute to the now-former Seattle Mariners star "a few years ago"
Where have you gone, Joe Dimaggio? Piazza, New York catcher, are you straight or are you gay? Go, go, go, go, Ichiro! OK, so as baseball songs go, Ben Gibbard’s newly posted song for longtime Seattle Mariners right fielder Ichiro Suzuki — who, in case you didn’t know, just went where almost every high-priced star player not signed by the Boston Red Sox seems to end up eventually — is probably closer to Creedence Clearwater Revival great John Fogerty’s silly “Centerfield.” Written “a few years ago,” according to the Death Cab for Cutie frontman, the jaunty, jangly, somewhat quaint-sounding tune may or may not be a preview of what to expect from Gibbard’s forthcoming solo debut album, Former Lives (due October 16 on Barsuk; “Ichiro’s Theme” is via 107.7 The End). But it’s a cheerful, sincere-sounding tribute to an impeccable baseball player, from a top-notch sensitive-indie-dude singer and songwriter. “Totally okay with this trade,” Gibbard wrote. “Thanks for your best years, Ichiro. We will always look back on them fondly.” Come up where the Yankees are, dress up in a pinstripe suit.