How Mambo Sauce became the voice of D.C. sports
If you're just a normal D.C. sports fan, this is probably how you know Mambo Sauce: as the band behind "Welcome to D.C.," the anthem that has often been played at Wizards game, and which then became the music for the John Wall/Ovechkin/McNabb/Strasburg video. That song seems made for D.C. sports -- it has a "Cowboys and Indians" reference, and has even been covered by the Ballou high school band. Mambo Sauce performed at the Wiz Midnight Madness thing last week, and when the team started warming up, they naturally closed their set with "Welcome to D.C." (Video here.) The George Mason basketball players, sitting in the front row, went nuts.
After they were done, I talked to Black Boo, the group's front man. He hadn't known "Welcome to D.C." was going to be used on that John Wall video until friends started calling and saying his song was on the local news. He might have liked some advanced warning, but he was happy that Mambo Sauce was getting linked to something positive in this city.
"We're as excited as anyone else in D.C.," he told me. "Welcome to D.C. embraces everything D.C. We're from D.C. We love D.C., every aspect of it. The song was organic, to be honest with you. It wasn't something we thought of in advance, it just happened."
He describes his band as "just a band," with roots in go-go, rock, hip-hop, R&B and soul. They play with Godfather of Go-Go Chuck Brown, tour with Reggae band SOJA, and consider themselves part of the same local movement that's produced Wale, Raheem DeVaughn, Tabi Bonney and a bunch of other emerging acts. Still, being linked to the sports teams is a bit of a changeup.
"It's a different audience than they're used to," Big Tigger told me. "And any time you get exposed to a new audience, that can't be bad."
Which brings us to the Redskins. Chris Paul, as you surely know, has been making weekly Redskins songs for years, mixing funny and serious Skins-related lyrics with existing tracks. His former station, WPGC, has been highlighting various weekly Redskins Songs since at least 1994, as Tigger told TBD. When Donovan McNabb was traded to the Skins, Black Boo released a cut praising the move. He sent it to Tigger, who played it on air. They later discussed Black Boo taking over the weekly Redskins Songs mantle, and he's done so four times already this fall, with the latest offering below. (Week 3 is here, Week 1 is here.) Players like Kareem Moore, Chris Wilson and Phillip Daniels have sent out links to the songs on Twitter, and they air repeatedly on the radio.
"Everything is beautiful, man," Black Boo told me. "To be an artist that represents D.C., and for them to show love to us is an honor. We're just a little fish in a big pond, so for the big fish to notice us is a beautiful thing."
The band already has plans to play live at a few Wizards home games this season. At Midnight Madness, Black Boo and Leonsis also talked about a Caps-related collaboration.
"Let's make it happen," Leonsis told Boo.
"And it'll happen soon," the frontman promised me. "I want to blow up every D.C. sport team. I don't care if it's D.C. United or the Mystics, whatever it is, I want to support them any way I can. I don't care if you come out with a lacrosse team or whatever, we're all D.C."
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