As referenced in my column in this week’s Enjoy, my plea for sports TV editors is to stop showing the “Who dat” chant backwards.
Listen to the clip above: It clearly goes, “Who dat say dey gon’ beat dem Saints? Who dat? Who dat?” But when editors and producers for TV segments splice together pieces about us crazy, passionate Saints fans, they edit it so that the chant is backwards. To spell it out:
WRONG: Who dat? Who dat? Who dat say dey gon’ beat dem Saints?
RIGHT: Who dat say dey gon’ beat dem Saints? Who dat? Who dat?
It’s scary how many times I hear this backward version. It’s regularly on ESPN. It was featured prominently in the DVD covering the Super Bowl season. Even quarterback Drew Brees got it wrong in a nationally-televised interview with a doting Katie Couric.
I guess there is some reason for confusion. Over the last few years, Saints fans have adopted “Stand Up and Get Crunk” by the Yin Yang Twins as an official anthem. As others have done versions with lyrics rewritten for the Black and Gold, the chant got incorporated in a backwards fashion. (Note: That link also shows a great moment of fans going crazy.)
But the reason it bugs me is that the correct version has such a great rhythm to it. It’s musical, it’s moving and almost spiritual. Compare that to the mushy, mealy-mouthed “Who dey” chant from Bengals fans. It’s no contest. And wow, is that song terrible.
Some bonus history about the musical clip above: It’s sung by Aaron Neville, and members of the ’83 team. All those “bum bum bum bums” aren’t just a chorus — they are a shout-out to then coach Bum Phillips, who brought some success and hope to a beleagured fan base that suffered through a 1-15 season two years prior. The New Orleans Times-Picayune published a pretty good history of “Who dat,” enough to effectively render any Cincinnati claim of originality null.
“But Joe,” you ask. “I see several times in that Times-Pic story above, where the history shows the two ‘who dats’ come first.” That’s true… enough to almost destroy my entire point. But the ’83 Neville song, with its order of lyrics gave the chant the life it has today. That’s the way it should be shown on TV, as far as I’m concerned.
Eh, none of this matters. All that matters is the upcoming season and defending the title. Instead of “Who dat,” it’s “Two dat.”