Bryce Harper is well-known for many things (hair, colossal home runs, swag (the personality trait), Swag (his dog)), and his walk-up music is no exception.
Since coming to the Majors in 2012, Harper has stepped to the plate for his first appearance of the day to MOBY’s “Flower.” Past that, it’s anyone’s guess as to who he’ll have told the folks in the press box to blast on the speaker.
In the past, Harper has jammed to Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, Run DMC, Kendrick Lamar, and Frank Sinatra.
However, last season, one of his staples was Sam Hunt’s country-pop-dance hybrid “Body Like a Back Road,” an annoyingly-catchy song that you already have stuck in your head just by reading this sentence.
It makes sense — the song is just country enough to appeal to country fans, just pop enough to be blasted on Top 40 stations, has just enough of a dance beat to be what the kids would call a bop, and hides its explicit meaning just well enough to be played in front of 40,000 people.
But don’t take our word for it, listen for yourself:
Alright, so the subtext is pretty strong.
But here’s where it gets (semi) interesting: Harper posted a video to his Instagram story of him potentially singing or potentially mouthing the words to Hunt’s summer jam. Thanks to Apple’s screen recording function and the glory of YouTube, it’s now online for your viewing pleasure.
But one thing to pay attention to as you listen: Is Harper singing, or mouthing along the words?
I have legitimately listened to Harper’s video and then to Hunt’s song (the two sync up at 0:27), trying to figure out if the Nationals’ outfielder has Hunt’s voice down cold, or if he’s just lipsyncing.
There are some notes that sound nearly unnoticeably flatter than Hunt’s recording, but it’s very hard to tell if that’s just a quirk of the audio.
If it is Harper singing, then he may have wasted his true talent: Being a cover artist on YouTube.
Is it Bryce? Is it just a recording? Are we desperate for content and willing to put up pretty much anything at this point because there has been nearly no Nationals news since October?
WE DON’T KNOW. WE WANT ANSWERS, BRYCE.
As a side-note, if any Federal Baseball readers have degrees in music theory or comparative music studies, please let us know: A) your thoughts on “Body Like a Back Road” and B) if you think Harper is actually singing.