Zero to 180 – Three Minute Magic

Discoveries of a Pop Music Archaeologist

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“Bowling U.S.A.”: Ten-Pin Pop

A rousing game of the ten-pin variant known as duckpin made me wonder recently how many songs have been written in celebration of the sport of bowling — an all-ages balm for these fun-starved times.

Wayne Kent, lead singer behind The Blue Flames‘ “Bowling U.S.A.,” exalts in one of America’s favorite pastimes while bravely confessing a physical frailty that (he claims) makes it impossible for him to even hoist the ball:

Note:  audio clip for “Bowling U.S.A.” has since been pulled fromYouTube, so instead, this piece will feature “Laser Cat Bowling” by Parry (“Raining Tacos“) Gripp:

“Laser Cat Bowling”     Parry Gripp     2012

Many thanks to 45Cat contributor mickey rat, whose research reveals indie label, Strand, to have once been a subsidiary company of Consolidated Frybrook Industries — founded in 1958 by Canadian entrepreneur, Jack Kent Cooke, who would go on to own a number of media outlets and professional sports teams, including the Washington [Pig]skins, as well as – at one point – the Chrysler Building.

Bowling USA

Listed below are a number of notable bowling-related tunes that include links to streaming audio – another public service from those tireless researchers at Zero to 180:

  • “Bowling Alley”     Harry Harden & His Musette Orchestra     1941
  • The Bowling Song”     Joe Montgomery     1957
  • “Gotta Go Bowling”     Guy Goodwin     1960
  • Bowling U.S.A.”     The Blue Flames    1960
  • “Bowling Alley Blues”     The Flintstones     1962
  • Tenpin Bowling”     Bryan Davies      1962
  • Bowling Ball Blues”     Mack Fields     1964?
  • Let’s Go Bowling”     Bert Kaempfert     1964
  • “Let’s Go Bowling”     Fred Baca     1965
  • “Left Hand Bowling Ball”     Dubb Pritchett     1965
  • “Bowling Alley Oop”     The Cavemen     196?
  • “Bowling Brings Out the Swinger in You”     The Twilights     1967
  • The Bowling Song”     Don Lewis     1968
  • Let’s Go Bowling”     The Telefones     1980
  • Bowling with Bedrock Barney”     The Dickies     1980
  • Crayola Bowling”     Stick Figures     1981
  • Take the Skinheads Bowling”     Camper Van Beethoven     1985
  • “The Bowling Ball”     Carl F. Becker     1985
  • L.G.B.”     Let’s Go Bowling     1988
  • “Bowling Ball Gardens”     The Halibuts     1994
  • Inside a Bowling Pin”     Fabric     1997
  • Bowling and Beer”     Da Yoopers      1999
  • The Bowling Song”     Asleep at the Wheel     2001
  • Let’s Go Bowling”     Camera Obscura     2001
  • Bowling Song”     Stephen Lynch     2002
  • Bowling with Mark E. Smith”     The Ik Jan Cremers     2007
  • Red Bowling Ball Ruth”     The White Stripes     2011
  • Laser Cat Bowling”     Parry Gripp     2012
  • Miss Marlene”     Donald Fagen     2012
  • Beer Frame Judy”     Mike J. Laneside & the Front Four     2013

Bowling 45Cincinnati in Song Alert!

On the flimsiest of “related” notes, I just discovered a song composed by Roger Bowling that somehow got excluded from my vast list of songs with Cincinnati in the song title — 1967’s “I’m Leaving Cincinnati” by Larry Roberts.

6 Responses

  1. Thanks for a great listing!!!! I will have a blast listening! What’s the best way to share the info with other would be fans?

  2. There is another song from a band called da yoopers called bowling and beer it not a bad listen as well love alot of these songs u posted

  3. Not exactly about bowling, but the Traveling Wilburys song “My Baby” has the following stanza.

    She’s got a body for business
    Got a head for sin
    She knocks me over like a bowling pin

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