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Baseball's Most Valuable Organist
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For 41 seasons, Nancy Faust was the organist for the Chicago White Sox, and revolutionized the ballpark experience. She joins the guys in studio to talk about her remarkable career. Plus, Cleveland Indians legend Rocky Colavito, and LPGA Tour Founder Louise Suggs.
Episode Segments:
 
Sports and Torts: Nancy Faust

For over 40 seasons, Nancy was a Chicago fixture at White Sox games, earning recognition by the Baseball Hall of Fame along the way. We find out how she got her start with the Sox, and where you can hear her these days.
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Sports and Torts: Rocky Colavito

We talk with the Cleveland Icon about his years with the Indians, the blockbuster deal that sent him to Detroit, and the problems he had with the media and fans while with the Tigers.
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Sports and Torts: Louise Suggs

Louise Suggs was a prime mover in the creation and success of the LPGA Tour, and one of its most successful competitors. We tee it up with her on her career from amateur to Hall of Famer.
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Guest(s) Appearing on this Episode
Nancy Faust
After earning a degree in psychology with a minor in education from North Park College, she chose to seek work playing at sporting events for a year before beginning a probable teaching career. She was hired to succeed Bob Creed as the White Sox organist for the 1970 season by public relations director Stu Holcomb, who had seen her perform at a banquet. Her original perch at Comiskey Park was an organ booth that was established in the center field bleachers in 1960 by Bill Veeck to encourage fan interaction.[2] Almost immediately, Faust became arguably the first sports organist to include pop and rock themes while playing during the games. Tying creative tunes from TV commercials or popular songs to various players and game situations not to mention her musicianship she made a name for herself, and for years has been a major entertainment force at both the old Comiskey Park and the new Comiskey (renamed U.S. Cellular Field in 2003). In the 1970s, Faust along with announcers Harry Caray and Jimmy Piersall, plus Andy the Clown became great crowd favorites at Comiskey Park. Usually, when fans think of Caray singing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" they think of the Chicago Cubs, but many remember that it was Faust, whose arrangement got Caray so inspired he would bellow the song out loud to himself, who inaugurated this tradition. Owner Bill Veeck put a public address microphone on Caray, turning him into a cultural icon. Caray later moved from Comiskey to the Wrigley Field press box, taking the tradition with him. Faust's genius has been recycling tunes, both well-known and less so, in unexpected directions. That was the case in 1977, when she used a refrain from a little-known pop song by the group Steam and created her own cultural icon. The 1969 single "Na Na Hey Hey (Kiss Him Goodbye)" would have been left among pop music's one-hit wonders if it weren't for Nancy, who after a Sox home run was hit and a Royals pitcher was sent to the showers thought "kiss it goodbye..." She played it, the crowd caught on and the rest is history. Another early adaptation that became a standard arena theme, Queen's "We Will Rock You", was given special fan treatment in Comiskey Park as "We will, we will, SOX you!" Having become the team's "key player," Faust found herself appearing on ABC's Good Morning America and written up in Sports Illustrated as baseball's "MVO, or Most Valuable Organist", among other accolades. She was even awarded a RIAA gold record from Mercury Records, whose sales of the old tune skyrocketed after Nancy's version took the sports world by storm. Nancy Faust at Comiskey Park on May 21, 1980 Fans have enjoyed being able to visit Faust during games and offer suggestions first in her open-air position in Comiskey Park's upper deck, and later in a booth behind home plate at U.S. Cellular Field. She has also served as stadium organist for numerous other Chicago teams, including the Bulls (19761984), Sting pro soccer team (19751988), DePaul University Blue Demons basketball (19771981), and Blackhawks (19841989). Many other teams have sent their own organists to take notes from her and have occasionally brought her to perform at their own games. The NHL's Minnesota NorthStars hired her for the 1987-1989 seasons for games that didn't conflict with her Blackhawks duties, and the Phoenix Coyotes hired her for three games in February 2008. The 2009 season was Faust's 40th as the Sox organist, and her approach to playing music at a baseball game is still considered the standard. Faust has missed only five scheduled dates in her career the result of giving birth and she did not miss any from 1983 through 2005. Starting with the 2006 season, she decided to cut back and only perform at daytime games. While this came as quite a blow to many fans, it is understandable with her closing in on four full decades with the Sox. Her "Na Na Hey Hey Goodbye" theme is imitated by other teams and fans all over the world, many of whom may be unaware of Nancy Faust and her part in this phenomenon. Faust's talents have been recognized in a new exhibit at the Baseball Hall of Fame called "Women in Baseball." She was also a featured performer for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra upon clinching of the 2005 American League pennant. Her mother, Jacquin Faust Soderberg Givers, who taught music following her own professional career, died September 4, 2007. She once filled in for Nancy at a White Sox game. Nancy Faust is married to Joe Jenkins and has a son, Eric "Jenkins" Jenkins, a prominent drummer in the Chicagoland area. In October 2009, Faust announced that the 2010 baseball season would be her final season behind the keyboard. Ten thousand Nancy Faust bobblehead dolls were presented to fans by the White Sox before their game on Sept. 18, 2010 at U.S. Cellular Field, with a ceremony held by the team in her honor. Faust was also profiled in a feature story in that day's New York Times. On Sunday, October 3, 2010, Nancy played her last game at U.S. Cellular.

Nancy's Website

 
Rocky Colavito
occo Domenico "Rocky" Colavito, Jr. (born August 10, 1933) in New York City is a former right fielder in Major League Baseball best known for his years with the Cleveland Indians. He usually wore the #7 or #21 jersey throughout his MLB career. Colavito was the fifth player in American League history to have eleven consecutive 20-home run seasons (1956-66), exceeding 40 home runs three times and 100 runs batted in six times during that span; he also led the AL in home runs, RBI and slugging average once each. Hitting all but three of his 374 career home runs in the AL, he ranked behind only Jimmie Foxx (524) and Harmon Killebrew (then at 397) among the league's right-handed hitters when he retired. In 1965, playing every game, he became the first outfielder in AL history to complete a season with a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage, and his 1272 AL games in right field ranked eighth in league history at the end of his career. In 1976, Rocky was voted the most memorable personality in Cleveland Indians' history. He was elected to the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 1981, and was inducted into the Cleveland Indians' Hall of Fame in 2006.He currently lives in Berks, Pennsylvania.

Rocky's Career Stats

 
Louise Suggs
Born in Atlanta, Suggs had a very successful amateur career, beginning as a teenager. She won the Georgia State Amateur in 1940 at age 16 and again in 1942, was the Southern Amateur Champion in 1941 and 1947,and won the North and South Women's Amateur three times (1942, 1946, 1948).She won the 1946 and 1947 Women's Western Amateurand the 1946 and 1947 Women's Western Open, which was designated as a major championship when the LPGA was founded.She also won the 1946 Titleholders Championship which was also subsequently designated as a women's major. She won the 1947 U.S. Women's Amateur and the next year won the British Ladies Amateur. She finished her amateur career representing the U.S. on the 1948 Curtis Cup Team. After her successful amateur career, she turned professional in 1948 and went on to win 55 professional tournaments, including 11 majors. Her prowess on the golf course is reflected in the fact that from 1950 to 1960 she was only once out of the top 3 in the season-ending money list. Suggs was an inaugural inductee into the LPGA Tour Hall of Fame, established in 1967, and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1979. She is also a member of the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame. She was one of the co-founders of the LPGA in 1950, which included her two great rivals of the time, Patty Berg and Babe Zaharias. Suggs served as the organization's president from 1955 to 1957. The Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year Award, given annually to the most accomplished first-year player on the LPGA Tour, is named in her honor. In 2006 Suggs was named the 2007 recipient of the Bob Jones Award, given by the United States Golf Association in recognition of distinguished sportsmanship in golf.

Louise Suggs at the LPGA Tour official site