Lyrical Breakdown

So you want to know what inspired the
lyrics behind Particle Business?

welcome all ya’ll to the Fermilab… on the Illinois prairie
beneath the bison… the frontier of science….

You know i had to mention the bison. They were stocked on the Fermilab property to tie in the old frontier of the United States with the new science frontiers that are build researched at Fermilab.

Let me introduce to you… FERMILAAAABBBBBBBBBB!!!!!!

rock stars of physics, particle business

“Rock stars of Physics” was inspired by watching the Drug Snigging Dogs in the Atom Smasher documentary. Dr. Ben Kilminster totally is a rock star and beer powered awesome (when he is performing on stage). This also inspired the guitar sound for the hook.

smash matter, antimatter and witness
quarks, bottom to top they don’t stop

Bottom and top as in the quarks. The work done by the people at Fermilab actually DOESN’T stop! They are always making anti-matter and stacking the Pbars and sending the proton beam somewhere even when they’re not colliding particles!

“where the Higgs at?” yo that’s their mark
where the Higgs at? x3
go go go!

Tevatron, OG atom smasher

OG is short for “original gangster” one of which meanings is authenticity, original incarnation

say hello to CERN’s party crasher,
the new “Lord of the Rings” LHC, hear me -

This is a Tolkien reference and tells how the Tevatron is giving way to the LHC

this be competitive collaboration baby

“competitive collaboration” is a phrase from Dr. Lederman in Atom Smashers

strippin’ electrons, makin’ ions of
, now pull that proton
give it that speed we need to make real science
get achieved, I believe –

Here I’m trying to put the process of creating the Tevatron beam into lyrically pleasing yet accurate words. Electrons are added to the hydrogen atoms so they can be pulled along by positive voltage. Later on they are stripped off so you’re left with just the proton nucleus of the H.

shock protons, greatly accelerated
two teraelectronvolts they rated

Actually its 1.97 TeV combined strength of the Tevatron’s two beams but that doesn’t sound as sweet as 2 TeV

fated to smash and get mated
creatin’ smaller bits, energy still equated!

Fated to smash in the CDF and D0 experiments. Using E=MC^2 we know that energy and mass have an equivalency. Thanks Einstein! You the man!

we love collisions, take snapshots
till we get the right shot
, learn a lot yo
a mad grip of events do occur
blast fast, data stream is a blur
normal events, they get ignored,
Higgs events, they get adored

Here I’m saying that much is going on, we can only learn so much from what happens. “Mad grip” is using hip-hop slang to say a large quantity.

high over frontier Wilson Hall tall with
aesthetics, its a science cathedral

The beauty and inspiration of the Wilson Hall is pretty cool, it IS a science cathedral! It’s design was inspired by a Gothic cathedral in Beauvais, France. To me, it looks like it influenced the Atari logo. :)

for the people that see with math,
collider detectors and massive graphs
D-Zero or CDF, who’s the best?

D-Zero or CDF? This is a reference to the competitive collaboration that exists between the two experiments… and groups of scientists! They definitely see with math and graphs.

if pressed I guess it’s who closest to
quench the measurement thirst and
who got their results in first

Getting the most accurate measurements and getting results in first are two concepts from Dr. Kilminster

Collision detectors, Fermion collectors
this ain’t the 60s with pocket protectors
peeps cool, like super conducted

The old paradigm of science has changed. All of the people at Fermilab are COOL!

magnets, you know four nine ain’t frontin

To ‘front’ is to put up a facade or make appearances. Super-cooled magnets are made super-conducting, meaning that they become mega-efficient due to zero electrical resistance.

to me triple beams don’t mean pushin’ mad coke, it’s
scientists in lab coats, so

Triple beam scale has been hijacked by rap. it is only used to describe measurements of cocaine. I’m bringing the scale brought back to the science lab.

you ready for insight twilight or limelight?
research in basic science, I’ll fight.

I feel the United States has a choice. Either strive for the scientific forefront or recognize this is the ‘twilight’ of our era of learning. There is much federal money spent in industries that have mismanaged their affairs. With science spending, there have been real spin-offs in our lives and opportunities to make and grow businesses.

who’s side you with? R&D dollars? or
pork spending for anyone who hollas?

Fermilab dollars come from the same place as funding for bridges to nowhere and new F-22 jets for the Air Force. The taxpayer. Vulcan philosophy says The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.  I’d like to remind people that when a dollar in government is used for a selfish project, its a dollar no going to benefit the greater good like science. In fact, I actually work for a medical imaging company with an MRI modality in each facility. I have a job because of magnetic fields. I have a job because of science.

brain drain? no technology policy.

Brain drain is loss of scientists to other countries with better spending. That’s no technology policy.

ballot box for better decisions in D.C.

Ballot box’ being used as a noun and a verb simultaneously. Let’s put smart, pragmatic and knowledgable representatives in office who hopefully can stay free from being extra-ordinarily swayed by corporate interests.

rap Carl Sagan over new Vangelis keys

I wanted to reference Carl Sagan because of his scientific outreach via his writings, television and speaking appearances. Vangelis was the music behind Sagan so I wanted him referenced also. The synthesizer patch and music composition during this part of the song is also supposed to reference Vangelis’s music.

science cutter clowns get smacked down please, I’m
trippin’ at students slippin’
(slippin’) in
test scores
, against the world they’re dippin
lets be liftin, positive like positrons
before we ask where we gone wrong
down with MTV, forget what you heard
get lost in Cosmos and Mister Wizard

I’d like the US to continue to provide science leadership with the world. I’d like the children in the US and the rest of the world to be as sharp as possible so that when they are adults, they are able to make the best decisions possible especially when voting. Thus, I’d rather have people be more interested in watching exciting and cool educational programming than dumb, non-encriching MTV crap. The positron aka anti-electron has a positive. Carl Sagan and Don Herbert were great science communicators. RIP gentlemen.

“Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known”
- Carl Sagan

Fermilab’s publication, symmetry magazine, has also published a lyrical breakdown.

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