Home Columns Anantha Narayan Bands With Balls

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    Cricket has so much in common with music. It revolves around players who work up a sublime rhythm on different pitches for compiling that perfect score during sell-out tours with an assortment of swingers, bouncers, and sliders for company.

    Which is probably why, more and more cricketers are notching up hits with a rocking band of their own. Brett Lee is the most visible face of the movement to mix Coldplay with Speedball. He began his musical avatar with Six & Out, an Oz band with five first class cricketers in its line-up. Named after the gully cricket rule that declares a batsman out if the ball gets lost when it’s whacked for a maximum, Six & Out, went on to create gems like Can’t Bowl, Can’t Throw. Lee, the vocalist and bass guitarist, later moved on to set up White Shoe Theory with songwriter Mick Vawdon. The name, of course, is whimsical and was born out of a Eureka moment when the two dudes discovered that everyone in their bar were wearing white shoes, except them.
    English spinner Graeme Swann’s rock band should easily win the sweepstakes for the naughtiest name. Called Dr Comfort and the Lurid Revelation, it’s apparently a nod to Dr. Alex Comfort, the author of The Joy of Sex that was pithily summed up as the ‘Kama Sutra of the baby-boom generation’ by the New York Times.

    Another musically inclined bowler, Curtly Ambrose, teamed up with his former captain Richie Richardson to form the Antiguan reggae band, The Big Bad Dread and the Bald Head. For seekers of meaning, Dread is one who believes in Rastafarianism and a Baldhead is the term for a non-believer. When some band members left, bassist Curtly and rhythm guitarist Ritchie rechristened their act as ‘Spirited Band’. Towel trickster and banned test match player Sreesanth is the pioneer of cricket bands in India. He formed the pop group S36 with six of his pals. The S refers to Sreesanth and 36, they say, is his lucky number. Considering he’s been unlucky to get caught, maybe he should rename his train-bogey-like S36 into the cheeky Caught & Bowled.

    -Anantha Narayan

    Know any more cricketer-led bands?
    Share your catch with anantha@albertdali.com.

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