In small-town Indiana, a local school district superintendent has found a new and exciting thing to ban: the song “Rocky Top.”
Dan Tyree, superintendent of the Plymouth Community School Corporation in Plymouth, Ind. (pop. 10,033) decided to outlaw “Rocky Top” because it mentions alcohol, reports local NBC affiliate WNDU.
“We have a hard time seeing how we can continue to let our whole school body — student body celebrate to a song that’s about alcohol,” Tyree told the station.
The country and bluegrass standard, which was penned in 1967 but seems like it’s been around centuries longer, contains two fleeting references to booze. In one verse, there’s a mention of “a moonshine still.” In the very next stanza, the song explains that people on Rocky Top “get their corn from a jar.”
The song has been a staple at Plymouth High School home football games for two decades. The team’s sports mascot is the Rockies. However, Tyree attempted to put a stop to the long tradition a couple weeks ago, ordering the band to stop playing “Rocky Top.”
Hilariously, students pointed out that they had no idea about any of the song’s references to illicit swill until Tyree intervened because they never sang those parts.
“It refers to in the third verse, a moonshine still. However, during the games, the parts that are played don’t have that actual wording in it so we’re just kind of dumbfounded—the fact that they took it away from, you know, just the third verse that was never played,” Plymouth High student Mack Mercer told WNDU.
In an impressive 35-12 win against Goshen on Friday night, students took matters into their own hands, proving they didn’t need the high school band to assist them. They raucously sang “Rocky Top” a capella all night after each Rockies score on the gridiron.
Students have also started a petition calling on Tyree to rescind the ban. Some 600 people have signed it.
The superintendent doesn’t appear moved.
“It probably should have never started, but it did and I just put an end to it,” Tyree proudly boasted to WNDU.