Fußball, Mainz, songs, songwriting

Carnival Junkies

Back in 2004, my home team Mainz 05 was finally promoted to the first division of the German Bundesliga after having been beaten on the last day twice in a row. First by asingle point, then by a single goal. It was a tragedy not many teams would have been able to digest, let alone beat the odds and be promoted the third time around.

But Mainz 05 is a special club in more ways than one. It’s a club that, above all, celebrates playing the game. But, then again, maybe that’s not too surprising for a football team based in a town with even more carnival tradition than Rio (sorry Roberta ; – I agree that the Cariocas have come up with something unique – but we’re just a little older over here).

So when Mrs. T., one of my fellow authors at www.fistfulofeuros.net, and native to Ireland, decided to honor the lads’ promotion with an English poem in 2004, I came up with the idea to write an English song based on the poetry –

“Climb wither though couldst not before
Now freed at last from gravity’s restraints
To the Empyrean on eagle’s wings
O thou heroic FSV Mainz”

However, even disregarding the “eagle” thing (Eintracht Frankfurt, a regional competitor uses the bird as logo), I just could not come up with a decent hook using these words, and eventually, I put the idea to rest for a while.

So it wasn’t until I read in the supporter’s web forum ““www.kigges.de” that fans were trying to translate some German songs and looking for suitable English material a bit more specific than the classic from “Caroussel” now that Mainz have been chosen to play in the UEFA cup qualifiers based on fair-play criteria that I decided to give the idea another go. I eventually decided against using Mrs T.’s poem, rewrote the lyrics, and suddenly everything fell into the right place – or so I think.

Now the song is called “Carnival Junkies”, a title that is not just a summary of much of what I think the team and their supporters are about, but also an hommage to the Californian singer/songwriter Cindy Alexander, who has written a song called “Carnival Junky” back in 2001 (I think).

For the time being, it’s a VST based, home-produced, demo and available as mp3 (128kbit, enclosed). Words, music and vocals by Tobias Schwarz, 2004-2005. Note that I have not been able to stand to sing due to a leg injury… Please contact me about ideas for commodification, should you have any. Enjoy!

Lyrics –

05 05 05 05 (x4)

(Verse 1)
Feels like we’re at home
In red in white we
Face the floodlight
You’ll never walk alone
In bust or boom,
Glory or gloom.

Don’t know why we
Feel that way
It’s been like that
Since our first day.

We’re Carnival junkies
who know how to play ball
We’ll never falter
We will stand tall (05)
Not for the money or for the fame
We just want to
play the game (05)
We’re Carnival junkies
Always up for a fight
You’ll feel the fire we will ignite (05)
For all the money and all the fame
We’ll stay the same
And win the game (05)

05 05 05 05

(Verse 2)
We held our heads high
When we were down cause
We knew all the time
They may laugh in our face
We’d try again
We’d win the race.

Don’t know why we
Feel that way
It’s been like that
Since our first day.


(Primary Bridge)
We’ll be singing when we’re winning
When the cups are coming home
When you ask what really matters
We’ll tell you it’s in our soul
We tasted our share of sand
We’ve been down there before
However tough, we will get up
You’ll know it when we score!

(Chorus x2)