Photo: Closer Weekly
On Saturday, Fenway Park was blessed with Neil Diamond’s presence, joining the traditional Red Sox eighth-inning sing-along to his iconic “Sweet Caroline.”
Since at least 1997 and halfway through the eighth inning since 2002, the Red Sox have been singing along to Diamond’s 1969 classic. Since then, countless sports teams from various sports have considered the song a kind of anthem in the league of “We Will Rock You” by Queen. Only a little less aggressive.
Back in the 2010 season, Diamond himself sang “Sweet Caroline” at Fenway on opening night. He even returned to Fenway in 2013 following the Boston Marathon bombing to spearhead the audience of the city in Sweet Caroline’s rendition.
But in 2018, Diamond decided to retire after discovering he had Parkinson’s disease.
Diamond released a statement at the time: “It is with great reluctance and disappointment that I announce my retirement from concert touring. I have been so honored to bring my shows to the public for the past 50 years.”
He added, “My thanks goes out to my loyal and devoted audiences around the world. You will always have my appreciation for your support and encouragement. This ride has been ‘so good, so good, so good,’ thanks to you.”
The legendary musician was in town celebrating a musical inspired by his life, Neil Diamond: A Beautiful Noise – in its world premiere on an engagement that spans six weeks in Boston ahead of going to Broadway.
However, even with the icon’s appearance, the Sox lost to the Cardinals, 11 – 2.