Flashback Friday: Slash Plays the National Anthems at the 2005 Home Opener

It’s one of the highest honours for a musician; the opportunity to play the National Anthem at Major League Baseball game. Unfortunately, often these performances are remembered for all the wrong reasons (ie: Roseanne Barr).

Thankfully, there is one National Anthem performance at the Blue Jays Home Opener that has stuck with me all these years for all the right reasons. It turns out not even one note had to be sung to make it a memorable National Anthem performance.

I’m happy to announce that Flashback Fridays are back once again, and for the inaugural Flashback Friday of 2012, we go into the Blue Jays vault and look back at Slash’s performance of the National Anthems at the 2005 Home Opener.


With the good though comes the bad, as Slash committed perhaps one of the biggest jersey fouls in Blue Jays history; he donned a half Blue Jays/half Red Sox jersey hybrid. In an attempt to appeal to both cities, Slash did a disservice to both teams.

The above photo of Slash is also incredibly rare for three reasons: he isn’t wearing a hat, he isn’t wearing sunglasses, and Slash is cracking a smile. It also shows the full-on atrocity of the Jays/Sox jersey hybrid.

The Blue Jays must have been going for the “hip factor” at the 2005 Home Opener because they also recruited Julian, Ricky and Bubbles from the Trailer Park Boys to throw out the first pitch.

For an anthem where not one word was sung, the performance resonated with the crowd. I don’t know whether this was an attempt for the Blue Jays to look a little more hip in 2005, but it definitely worked as Slash was flawless in his performance.

Images courtesy of Getty Images

Ian Hunter

Ian has been writing about the Toronto Blue Jays since 2007. He enjoyed the tail-end of the Roy Halladay era and vividly remembers the Alex Rodriguez "mine" incident. He'll also retell the story of Game 5 of the 2015 ALDS to his kids for the next 20 years.