Talking Steelers Football With The Clarks Scott Blasey
Scott Blasey of the Pittsburgh based group The Clarks grew up a Steelers fan and is thrilled when he has the opportunity to sing the National Anthem before a game at Heinz Field.
Blasey sang prior to the Steelers-Panthers game this preseason and proudly sported a Hines Ward jersey.
Blasey recently took time out to talk with Teresa Varley for Talking Steelers Football.
The following is what he had to say.
What is it like for someone who grew up in Pittsburgh to sing the National Anthem at a Steelers game?
It's a thrill and it's kind of surreal. I grew up coming to Steelers games. The first time I sang the anthem was at Three Rivers Stadium at a Monday Night Football game. It was just incredible. You are kind of overwhelmed by the experience. It takes a few times doing it before you start feeling comfortable singing. It's kind of out of body.
*Do you still get jitters when you go out there and sing? *Oh yeah. There are about 30,000 or 40,000 people in the stadium when you sing, more than any other audience. I know it's only one song for a couple of minutes, but that's a lot of people to sing to. Plus the song is a little more challenging than what I am used to. It makes it a little more nerves.
How long have you been a Steelers fan?
It was in 1972. I was totally into sports. I remember the Sears Christmas catalog where you could buy jerseys and the sleeping bags. I remember the Immaculate Reception.
How closely are you able to still follow the team?
I usually come to a couple of games every year and if I am not on the road I watch religiously.
What has Mike Tomlin brought to this team?
I love his youthful enthusiasm. He is intense guy but you can tell he is having a good time. I think he instills that in his players – to go all out, play hard but it's still a game. I love to watch him and I love his interviews.
What do you think is the strength of this year's team?
I think the strength is becoming their maturity. Ben (Roethlisberger), Hines (Ward), Aaron (Smith) and Casey (Hampton)….There is a lot of veteran leadership there and I think that maturity is going to be one of their strengths.
Pittsburgh fans strongly support the Steelers and The Clarks. What makes Pittsburgh fans so special?
Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania people are very loyal. If you display that loyalty to them you get it back ten-fold. We have been a part of this community for 22 years so people know we are going to be around next year and the year after that and probably 10 years down the road. There is that sense of continuity. When you are a young person in town you grew up listening to the Clarks on the radio like you grew up watching the Steelers.
Is there a current Steelers player you really enjoy watching, a guy who you respect his game?
James Harrison is the most fun guy to watch. He is so good and fast. I played basketball against him at a charity game. That is when you are really impressed by their athleticism. It's just incredible. He was so nice at the event. He was kind and generous with his time. He had a good time with the fans. He was fun to watch.
What current member of the Steelers would you like to have as a member of The Clarks and what would he do?
I think it would be Casey Hampton and I would just have him standing in the back of the stage with his arms crossed.
What current Steelers player could handle the pressure of singing the National Anthem?
Willie Parker. He is a soft-spoken guy but if the pressure was on him he would get out there and belt it out.