Tim Flannery shares his experiences – baseball and otherwise – through music

Published on March 29th, 2021

By Jim Dail

Tim Flannery shares his experiences through music

Tim Flannery has had a long baseball career, both as a player with the San Diego Padres, then as a coach with the San Francisco Giants, winning three World Series titles. With all of that accomplished, he is delighted that his musical career has been so successful.

“To be able to do music full time and work with Major League Baseball, I can’t believe we’ve earned this respect,” said Flannery, who will perform Saturday at Thornton Winery as part of the 2015 Champagne Jazz Concert Series.

Talking with Flannery during a recent telephone interview, it is clear the music isn’t just a fad, but a true love.

“I have fourteen records and have toured for years, so while some might think that what I’ve been doing is dabbling, it is much more than that,” he said. “I love to be out there performing.”

Flannery played with the Padres for eleven years, including the 1984 National League championship team. He retired last year after his third championship as a coach.

“You know, you win the first one and it is incredible, then the second one and it is incredible,”
 he said. “Then you win the third one and you’re good!”

Considering he has recorded and toured so often, it’s not a surprise that he has a broad range of styles when it comes to music.

“Every record has been different,” he said. “I have a bluegrass record, an Irish one, a 70s-style one. And the new one is ‘Three Ring Circus,’ which is about my adventures.”

It’s an album about experiences in baseball and being on the road. 

“I play music because I love it,” he said. “Some say they are baseball songs, but they are about the characters I’ve met on the road. If you spent 33 years on the road, there are a lot of characters. Lot of crazies out there!”

He was a performer long before he retired.

“I would have people comment, ‘Why is he coaching and singing,’” he said. “It’s in my blood. I like to be on stage telling stories and singing and playing the guitar. I can do both.” 

As for this album, it’s a rocker.

“This album is kind of a rock album with some San Francisco influence,” he said.  “Most importantly, every cent of the record goes to the Love Harder Project.”

The project is about supporting Brian Stow, the Giants fan who was beaten at Dodger Stadium in 2011, and reducing school bullying and violence. Flannery’s music has helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for the cause.

“Brian Stow goes out to schools to talk to the kids and make them take a vow about anti-bullying,” he said. “We want to help him so he can get out of his wheelchair and go to more speaking engagements. Sometimes they can’t get him there so we are trying to fund transportation methods.”

But the music is about Flannery.

“I don’t write songs for other people,” he said. “I just say here it is and I hope you like it. Besides, as Jackson Browne once told me, a song is going to mean something different to different people.”

There is also a very local connection.

“My mother is Thornton Wine Club member,” he laughed. “Now I know the place she gets the chocolate wine!”


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