The "We Are Family" Pirates And The Anthem of '79
By | September 20, 2021
In 1979, the Pittsburgh Pirates rode the catchy tune, “We Are Family” by “Sister Sledge” to become one of the most unlikely champions in sports history. With a soundtrack bred by the ‘70s, the Pirates took themselves and the song to heights never before seen by either. Before Pittsburgh took off, “We Are Family” enjoyed a modest run of success. After it became the song of the summer, the album and single both sold over a million copies.
The unlikely hit also ranked as the second pop song on Billboard’s charts for the year. The good vibes of “We Are Family” imbued the city and team with a belief that anything was possible as long as they relied on one another.
How “We Are Family” Came To Be Pittsburgh's Theme Song
June of ‘79, the Pirates resembled anything but champions. As early as May 20th, the team owned a losing record. A spirited five-game winning streak into June managed to improve their record to 23-21, going into a homestand with the San Diego Padres. In the first game, the Pirates pulled off a wild comeback, rallying down 8-5 going into their final at-bats. In a jubilant locker room afterward, team captain Willie Stargell put on “We Are Family” by Sister Sledge and something special started.