Doug Roberson of the AJC had an interview with Tito Villalba where he asked him if he played the guitar, it turns out he doesn’t, but that got me thinking: what would Atlanta United sound like if they threw down their footy boots and picked up musical instruments?
With Atlanta’s diverse roster featuring players from England, Ireland, Germany, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile, Venezuela, Honduras, Trinidad & Tobago, and the United States of America, they would really produce a unique sound. I think it would be something of a mix between rock, salsa, reggaeton, polka, Irish folk music, tango, and trap music: in short it would be the hottest mix tape ever dropped in history of Atlanta music.
But such potential begs the questions: who would play what instruments and roles in the band? What would it sound like? What would it be called? Will Andrew Carleton play this weekend? When will Josef Martinez start again? (OK some of those don’t have anything to do with the band, but really when will Josef start again?)
Anyway, let’s get weird.
Alec Kann: Security - where else would a keeper be but wearing a cut off t-shirt and aviators at night while keeping drunk fans from rushing the stage?
Michael Parkhurst: Trumpet - both it and center back are difficult to play. When it’s good people notice, but when something’s off, the whole ensemble can be out of step. Plus, Parkey also has a kind of Herb Alpert thing going on and along with Brandon Vazquez and Greg Garza, he could start a Tijuana Brass Band revival side project.
Leandro Gonzalez Pirez: Drums - the Dave Lombardo of MLS as he would be known, LGP can speed things up, slow things down, and put you on your backside if need be.
Tyrone Mears: Saxophone - not the Kenny G type or sad NPR transition music kind of sax, but an exciting and improvisational horn that would find a place belting out licks with the likes of the Blues Brothers or John Coltrane.
Greg Garza: Hypeman - the guy never stops moving and seems to be everywhere: you want excitement? Look at Baller Master GG Jam.
Jeff Larentowicz: Guitar - In a lot of ways the Ginger Ninja is like the team’s Keith Richards. It’s not that Jeff is an aficionado for needle drugs, may have snorted his father’s ashes with cocaine, and almost burned down the Playboy mansion, but his versatility and interplay with other players really makes the team hum.
Carlos Carmona: Bass - you need someone to thump out a steady beat and crush counter attacks when they develop and Carlos is your man.
Chris McCann: Fiddle - a lot of people don’t know this, but the song ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’ was inspired by McCann’s ability to shred the fiddle and beat the devil in a fiddle playing contest winning a fiddle made of gold.
Miguel Almiron: Songwriter - the creative force behind Atlanta United, Almiron puts it all together and everything leads back to him. His relentless effort and quiet demeanor overshadow the monster influence that he has on the group.
Yamil Asad: Spitting fire - if Asad ever tried to get into the rap game, the Argentine would make Matisyahu, Twista, and Busta Rhymes look like Froggy Fresh.
Tito Villalba: Lead guitar - you may not always know what he’s going to do, but he’s going to do it fast.
Kenwyne Jones: Keyboards - he’d have to steal it from Lady Gaga, but Jones would look rad playing the circular keyboard from her halftime show at the Super Bowl.
Josef Martinez: Frontman, lead vocals - picture it a lone figure stands lighted on an otherwise dark stage fists clenched by his sides, staring into the faces of his fans: the crowd roars, the music kicks in and doesn’t end for 90 minutes with Josef leading the band in a rousing tune and not letting up until he has a hat trick.
Julian Gressel: Accordion - Don’t laugh, everything from German polka, Argentine great Bela Fleck and the Flecktones’ tango inspired sounds, and música norteña needs a great accordionist to bring all of the diffuse styles of music they play together.
Kevin Kratz: Backup Accordion - for when Julian needs a break.
Andrew Carleton: DJ - the kid looks like he can spin, plus DJ Frosted Orange just sounds like it fits. Plus, he and Larentowicz could split off and start an Agent Orange tribute band.
As far as the name you could go a lot of ways with this: The Don’t Call Me Larrys, Josef McTango and the Musikmaschine, The Firebirds, Barber Jones ft. Young Perezy, The Black Harts ... I could go on but was told to keep the post to under 5,000 words.
In the end, it’s pretty obvious - an ode to the fusion based sound of the Jurassic 5 and composers of the iconic soccer tune ‘Seven Nation Army,’ the super group would be called The Five Stripes and would terrorize the ear drums of parents and neighbors trying to get to sleep for generations.