A New Wizards Jingle
Yeah, the season's over. Whatever.
I talked to Dana Mozie the other day. He's the guy who, reportedly, wrote or helped write "You the Man," the old Bullets/Wizards jingle whose video (seen below) has coursed 'round the Internets this winter. I say "reportedly" because, like everything that's supposed to be simple, this story gets complicated.
Mozie told me he also was behind "Go New York Go," a hugely popular Knicks theme. The Post and the New York Daily News have reported as much. The New York Times covered this back in '93 or so, in a William Rhoden column that gave most of the credit to Mozie's partner, the white Long Island-raised rapper Jesse Itzler aka Jesse Jaymes. A brief Newsday profile in '97 called Mozie the composer of "Go New York Go," but the next year Newsday wrote a long story (by future WaPo reporter Emily Wax) on a nasty split between Itzler and Mozie. They had stopped talking, and were arguing about who had actually written "Go New York Go;" there was an out-of-court settlement, and allegations of racism, and all that.
"I wrote the hook 'Go New York Go New York Go' and the music," Mozie said.
Says Itzler: "Dana just put the tracks together. I, without a doubt, wrote the lyrics."
The dispute apparently spread to "You the Man," according to that Newsday story.
"Everybody loves 'You the Man,' " said an exasperated Judy Holland, vice president for community relations for Washington Sports and Entertainment, which does management work for the Wizards. "We're just not sure who wrote the thing."
WaPo columnist Courtland Milloy devoted an entire column to Mozie as the genius behind "You the Man," and then offered an addendum in a later column, apologizing for not mentioning Itzler and another guy from Itzler's company.
So it's complicated. I didn't know all this when I talked to Mozie. All I knew was I was excited to talk with someone who helped give the world "You the Man," someone who had also done production work for Salt-N-Pepa and Kid 'N Play, working under the name Dana Dum. He has a MySpace page, if you're curious. And while he didn't know that "You the Man" had made the YouTube rounds, he still speaks passionately about the song, which apparently had both Bullets and Wizards incarnations.
"It was a proud moment, you know," he told me. "For the first time, here was a song that united the people in Southeast, the season ticket holders, and the people in the $5 hot dogs seats: All races, all colors, are ages, all income brackets."
Mozie said he's now a hip-hop ambassador for the GOP, and that he's working on an anti-violence project involving local documentarian Curtis Mozie, Nas and Chris Webber. And most importantly, he says he's got another anthem in store for the Wizards.
"We're working on a special surprise for the campaign next year, and it's going to be something that will take the team all the way," he told me. "Within the next year or two we're going to at least be in the Finals. Let's get the fans behind them; we can make it a very hard time for teams in this arena. They will fear the fan, because we're gong to make an anthem. And they're going to feel so much love, it's going to intimidate them."
I can't way to see LeBron in the playoffs next year, intimidated by the love, and by the dancing Susan O'Malley. And yes, this is definitely a good time to post the video yet again, because it's impossible to watch this too many times.
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