Basketball Scene

by Stephen Longfellow Fiske

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Basketball Scene is years of basketball experience in narrative song, descriptive of the culture of pick-up ball, basketball's foundation.

Award winning singer/songwriter/author/poet and producer Stephen Longfellow Fiske is an American original. Accompanied by his rhythmic acoustic guitar playing, Fiske’s unique style of poetic, melodic songs, and storytelling has led him to perform and lecture widely across the US and abroad.

Fiske was a basketball player in high school and attended college at NYU on a basketball scholarship. He has written a number of songs primarily descriptive of the basketball culture of pick-up games, and has now compiled these songs into his tenth CD, Basketball Scene, combining his love of basketball and music. In Basketball Scene, Fiske taps into his basketball experiences and brings his adept skills of observation of the culture of basketball, along with a lifetime of poetic songwriting, production and musicality, to create a unique work of contemporary folk/pop. Basketball Scene stands apart in its originality and narrative as a colorful, inspirational work in painting pictures, giving profiles, and telling stories.


released November 1, 2013

Stephen Longfellow Fiske - Guitar, Vocals, Percussion
Barry Fasman - Keyboards
Oliver Brown - Percussion
Jeff Breeh - Bass, Electric Guitar
Hal Ratliff - Piano
Crystal Davis - BG Vocals
Richard Hardy - Flute
Christo Pallani - Timbali, Percussion


all rights reserved



Stephen Longfellow Fiske Los Angeles, California

Musician, Poet, Author, Producer, Husband, Father, Basketball Guy.

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Track Name: Basketball Scene
Basketball Scene (Fiske)

On Saturday they come out to play
The short ones and the tall
From uptown, downtown, all around
They come to play basketball

In their hoopster suits they gather and shoot
In high-tops and in low
They jive and bull ‘til the court gets full
And the game ‘bout ready to go

Then they’ll choose up sides, five on five
It’s the court the winner’s earn
It’s the loser’s fate to sit down and wait
While the challengers take their turn

It’s a basketball scene, do you know what I mean?
Could be down the schoolyard up or up in a gym
Where shootin’ hoops is a happenin’ thing
Basketball scene, whoa oh oh oh oh oh, Basketball scene

There ain’t no refs so they call their own
You know the game gets rough
Much time is spent in argument
Like lawyers struttin’ their stuff

When elbows deal and bodies reel
And hot sweat drips and shines
In the intensity anyone can see
There’s more than a game on the line

Repeat chorus

On Saturday they come out to play
By noon the best are there
Then it’s a better treat than a garden seat
As that rock flies through the air

Why there’s green-eyed Frank who’s built like a tank
With more moves than a babblin’ brook
And there’s Nate the great who’s six foot eight
The pros gave him a look

And there’s Wide Clyde whose game’s inside
And owns the boards with ease
And there’s talkin’ Harry whose commentary
Doesn’t always mean to please

repeat chorus

It’s a happenin’ thing
In every city and every town
You can find the courts, you can hear the sounds
Of the ball bouncin’, the players playin’
This is what I’m sayin’,
Come on out, catch a run
Play your game baby have some fun

Fake n’ bake take it to the hole
Finish strong with a finger roll
Shoot from downtown let it fly
Nothin’ but net, baby, in your eye

Catch a bound, make the outlet pass
Run the break, bank it off the glass
Get a rip, turn the tide
Feed it to the man slam dunkin’ inside

Find your rhythm, on your hops
You’re in a zone, you can’t be stopped

Repeat chorus
Track Name: Heart of the Game
The Heart of the Game (Fiske/Fasman/Blaisch)

There’s a kid down the street
He got basketball eyes
He got basketball dreams
Burnin’ inside
When he shoots in his drive-way
lost in fantasy
He’s hittin’ clutch shots on national TV

He got basketball heroes
All the kings of the court
He’ll grow to be like them
At the top of the sport

He’ll rise through the ranks
From the playground to the pros
And keep that kid in him
Wherever he goes

‘Cause there’s a kid at the heart of the game
All around the world
There are kids who dream the same
Fly down the floor, take to the sky
Live the dream, and no one can deny
There’s a kid at the heart, at the heart of the game

There’s a man down the street
Silver hair, gettin’ old
He was once quite a player
So it’s been told
And he sees that young kid
And he watches him grow
And he wonders
If that kid will come to know:

Just what it takes
To be the best
To rise to the challenge
To take on the test
To reach deep inside
For that warrior’s pride
For that zone to be in
That will to win
Will to win, will to win

Repeat chorus
Track Name: Old School
Old School (Fiske)

He got gray in his hair
He got aches in his bones
He got bad ankles and shot knees
But he still got his Basketball Jones

He still laces up those high-tops
He still pulls on those old shorts
He still goes out to play in the pick-up games
At the local court

He’s rich in his memories
Of back in the day
When he could run with anyone
They say that he could play

He’s a livin’ legend
Everybody knows his name
The young bucks call him “Old School”
Old School still got game

He’s lost a big step or two
He can’t sky up off the floor
That great quickness, speed, and agility
Just ain’t there no more

That once youthful physicality
Now gets so tired and sore
Each time he plays he knows his days
Got Father Time knockin’ at the door
Yeah, Father Time got a full court press on you,
Old School

But he will fight with the winner’s will
His Spirit will not fade
He’s learned his basketball lessons well
He knows of what he’s made

It’s not about being in your face
It’s about the love of the game
Be a good sport, leave it on the court
Win or lose, no blame no shame

Be poised and play with confidence
Always give it all you got
Play team ball and strong defense
Take the high percentage shot

Let the game come to you
Don’t rush, box out, rebound
Square up, release, follow through
Play fundamentally sound

Yeah, Old School, fundamental

He may be old, he may be slow
But he’s still got a trick or two
You better guard him closely
Or he can make a fool of you

For all those hours on the court
He’ll live with no regret
When that final buzzer sounds he’s earned
The Basketball God’s respect

He got gray in his hair
He got aches in his bones
He got bad ankles and shot knees
But he still got his Basketball Jones

He’s a livin’ legend
Everybody knows his name
The young bucks call him “Old School”
Old School still got game
Track Name: Lisa
Lisa (Fiske/Fasman)

Lisa grew tall, long and lean
As gifted an athlete as anyone’s seen
With competitive fire, powerful will
The drive and desire for perfecting her skill

In a great career, she became All-American
A star in the WNBA
Four-time Olympian, gold-medal champion
Playin’ for the USA

Take the talent and run,
Take the talent and run,
Take it to the top, take it the limit
Take the talent and run

When Lisa retired, her playin’ days done
She turned a new chapter, time to move on
As a broadcaster, team owner, entrepreneur,
Still in the game, still settin’ standards for sure

Repeat chorus

Lisa, while she played
Began a family
A homemaker and a wife
Mother of two, makin’ a good life
Makin’ dreams come true

Repeat chorus

Lisa stands tall as a basketball star
A role model showin’ you can go far
When you stand in your power
Be strong in your quest
Play a complete game, compete with the best

Repeat chorus
Track Name: Little Man
Little Man (Fiske)

He’s five foot six, not bound by size
Can play basketball with any man alive
Can twist and twirl like Earl the Pearl
Can handle the ball like Chris Paul
Can run and gun and jump through the sky
Money time, he’s the go to guy
Little man, believin’ that you can
The ball is in your hands, little man

He’s lighting quick, he’s a thief on D
He can drive and dish, knock down a three
Movin’ and fakin’ and drivin’ that lane
Electrifyin’ the crowd in a big man’s game
Repeat Chorus

Little man, we can all root for you
You’re like David takin’ on that Goliath
That he slew
Oh little man, we can all relate to you
You’re the underdog, long-shot guy
Who makes big dreams come true
Repeat Chorus

Well they said that he was just too small
To make the grade playin’ basketball
Well he proved them wrong and set them straight
That little man keeps playin’ great
It’s not just the size that sets him apart
It’s all about the size of the heart
Repeat Chorus
Track Name: He's A Big
Big Man (Fiske)

He’s big, strong, don’t say much
6’ 6”, 260, they call him “Clutch”
His game’s down low, he’s the go-to cat
It’s the bucket or the foul, you can count on that
He owns the boards, he owns the lane
You don’t go down there if you don’t like pain
He’s a big, big man, he’s a big

He got shoulders like boulders, elbows like bricks
Hands like a vice, legs oak-tree thick
When he sets a screen, it’s a concrete wall
Guys bounce off him like a pin-ball
He’s the enforcer, the mountain on the floor
Owns the gym when he walks in the door
He’s a big, big man, he’s a big

One day Clutch met his match
From cross-town. They call him “Satch”
Satch’s 6’9”, 284
Got good skills, can run the floor
Played pro ball overseas
Now he’s lookin’ for a job with an NBA team
He’s a big, big man, he’s a big

The two got ballin’, sweat flyin’
Body’s bangin’, Clutch looked like he’s dyin’
Satch wore him out, right down to the bone
But underneath Clutch held his own
The two warriors battled, when the games were done
Clutch shook his hand, said “thanks for the run”
He’s a big, big man, he’s a big

He’s big, strong, don’t say much
6’ 6”, 260, they call him “Clutch”
He looks real mean and his game is rough
But off the court, he a sweet cream-puff
He’s a family man, takes care of his own
Look out for his son, when he’s fully grown
He’s a big, big man, he’s a big
Track Name: Lady of the Court
Lady of the Court (Fiske)

Saturday mornin’ she rises outta bed
Sips some coffee, stretches,
Shakes the sleepy out of her head
In t-shirt and shorts and high-tops
She steps out on the stoop
Jogs down to the playground
Where the guys are shootin’ hoops

She got pig-tails, 5’4”
Can handle herself on the basketball floor
She knows all the weekend warrior’s names
Down at the park in the pick-up games
Basketball’s her sport
She’s the Lady of the Court

The guys all greet her
They always treat her nice
They’ve come to respect her
Gutsy woman breakin’ the ice
In a man’s basketball culture
She has earned her spot
You can’t take her lightly
She can make her shots

Repeat chorus

Ooo Lalalala she just loves to play
Ooo gets a workout every Saturday
Enjoys hangin’ out, horsin’around with the guys
Talkin’ sports and politics and life
With that sweet sparkle in her eye

Repeat chorus

Saturday afternoon
Her makeover becomes unfurled
As she dresses up for an evening out
Far from that basketball world
Those guys would not recognize her
In make up, short skirt, and high heels
She’s a woman, she’s accomplished
She is awesome, she’s for real

Repeat chorus
Track Name: Go For It
Go For It (Fiske)

Go for it, give it everything you got
You gotta go for it, give it your best shot
Come on and Go for it, give it everything you got
You may not think that you get too much
But you just might get a lot

If the world’s got you down
You’re wearin’ a frown
And nothin’ is goin’ right
The sun won’t come out
You’re clouded with doubt
Cannot see the light
It’s when the goin’ gets tough
That your love gets goin’
Hang in there when you’re hardest hit
It’s never too late to keep the faith
Hold on to your dreams and don’t quit and sing…

Repeat chorus

If you got a dream, deep in your heart
Something that’s callin’ to you
Like that unfinished script, that fabulous trip
That success you aspire to
You wanna win the game, make the hall of fame
Win a championship ring or two
You wanna pass the test, be at your best
Here’s what you gotta do

Repeat chorus

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