By Luis Gomez
7:56 AM CDT, October 19, 2011
You won’t find much country music blaring in the Cubs’ locker room during the season — at least not the Texas Red Dirt kind Randy Wells likes. The Cubs pitcher said the music in the locker room is predominantly reggae, which he doesn’t mind, and hip-hop, which he does mind.
Rather than battle with teammates over the music, Wells prefers to keep his headphones on and listen to George Strait and Merle Haggard.
“I get pumped up by good lyrics, even if it’s a slow song,” said Wells, 29, over the phone last week. “But I get it. There are 25 guys in there. I know guys don’t want sappy country music playing to bring them down, so I never try to put it on.”
On Friday, Wells won’t have to relegate his music to his headphones. The Belleville, Ill. native and Texas Red Dirt singer Stoney LaRue will host Boot Bash 2011 at Joe’s Bar. The benefit concert will feature performances by LaRue and Midnight River Choir, with proceeds going to the troops-focused Boot Campaign. Wells will be wearing the combat boots that have become a symbol of the Boot Campaign and encourages guests to buy a pair at Joe’s during the event.
“(The Boot Campaign) is designed to raise awareness about post-traumatic stress disorder and helps these people deal with the rigors of civilian life when they come back,” Wells said.
This won’t be Wells’ first time teaming up with LaRue. LaRue performed when Wells hosted Red Dirt Fest at Joe’s last year (Ryan Theriot was supposed to co-host the benefit concert but was traded from the Cubs to the St. Louis Cardinals shortly before the event). Wells also co-worte the song “Dresses” with LaRue, but hasn’t written a song since.
“I’m trying to,” Wells said. “I’ve hit a block lately. I got lucky with that one with Stoney. I tried to do one on my own, but I don’t do well by myself.”
Is Wells thinking about a career in song writing once his baseball career ends?
“It’s not my No. 1 priority right now,” Wells said. “I plan on winning baseball games first.”
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