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Cantina Margarita

Posts: 162
Reply with quote  #31 
Hi guys,

so here's what I think about my own four songs. Waiting for the last second would mean playing foul.

Karat - Sieben Bruecken
No kidding, one of the greatest pop ballads of all time for me. Something like the inofficial national anthem here. Federal Presidents wish to hear it at their retirement ceremony. Everybody here can hum it, and the symbolic lyrics are familiar to very many people in east and west, at least in their core. Peter Maffay made a multiple million seller of it. Hardly anybody outside the country knows it, but nobody cares about that. I introduced it as just another eastern breeded song. That was understatement, sorry.
There is an English version by Chris de Burgh, but imo he doesn't reach Peter Maffay and Herbert Dreilich by far.

Silly - Verlorene Kinder
It's the oriental sounding intro, followed by that fairy tale creature, singing about a well-known scary beast at Tina Turner's deepest voice, in most authentic eastern tongue. If the first 30 seconds sell a song, then this is a masterpiece. In a certain mood, this song is still teardriving to me. The final 30 seconds represent the most impertinent lines that made it through the censor's filter. A hard-earned kick right amidst into “the Party's“ goons. One of the most iconic hits (competing with “Looking For Freedom“ by David Hasselhoff :-) during the euphoric “wind of change“ phase, very good vibrations connected to it. It needs a song like “7 Bruecken“ to push it down from #1 to #2.

Puhdys - Wenn ein Mensch lebt
The first substantial GDR song that made it to the top of western charts. A kind of signal from the east, saying “hey, listen, we're not so bad“. The Spicks And Specks similarity came as a minus, making people reply “hey, is that all you can ?“ The Puhdys (an acronym from their first names, like ABBA) proved to be able to do much more. Wenn Ein Mensch Lebt still is their standard concert encore, a very cool song.
* correction: they dissolved officially in 2016, for reasons of age. A big loss.

Leningrad Cowboys - California Girls
I selected it in order to obey the rule of providing at least 1 BB or BW related song. I like it a lot, and I could kiss the charming Russian lead singer every time I hear him. But the other three, to me, weigh a lot of karats heavier.

Big thanks to you all for supporting my experiment which I've had in mind for a long time. I don't expect high voting numbers, but discussions were very interesting and entertaining. My next hosting weeks will be a bit easier.

Voting will be closed on Sunday evening 23:00 Western Time (digital clock on top of Brian's refrigerator), which is Monday 7:00 a. m. CEST (my f***ing alarm clock), and Monday 19:00 in NZ in Bonnie's car.

I'll count the score afterwards, and I will publish it a bit later on euro Monday morning.

Here's one last link from me. Very eastern.
Popeye (not the sailor)

Posts: 156
Reply with quote  #32 
My iron clad votes:

Gold: Puhdys - Wenn Ein Mensch Lebt - The best song to my ears with an interesting Bee Gees connection tossed in.

Silver: California Girls - Leningrad Cowboys - Bizarrely good rendition.

Bronze: Silly - Verlorene Kinder - Good band and the singer is easy on the eyes.

Tin: Karat - 7 Bruecken - Didn't make an impression.

Thanks for sharing Cantina!
Cindy Hood

Avatar / Picture

Posts: 1,522
Reply with quote  #33 
Hi, Cantina!

Here are my votes:

Gold:  Leningrad Cowboys - California Girls

Silver:  Silly - Verlorene Kinder
Bronze:  Karat - 7 Bruecken

Tin: Puhdys - Wenn ein Mensch lebt

"They're not gonna catch us. We're on a mission from God".
David W

Posts: 466
Reply with quote  #34 
Interesting week ! My votes :

Gold: Silly - Verlorene Kinder
Silver: Puhdys - Wenn Ein Mensch Lebt
Bronze: Karat - 7 Bruecken
Tin: Leningrad Cowboys - California Girls

Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #35 
GOLD Silly
SILVER Leningrad Cowboys
TIN Karat.  Doesn't get my gold. 

Cantina Margarita

Posts: 162
Reply with quote  #36 

Here's the preliminary voting results, subject to change after Darren's points check and Paul A's postal votes.

Silly - Verlorene Kinder (Lost Kids) - 1988 (40) (5G, 4S, 4B, 0T)
a clear winner, due to appreciation for a good song from good musicians, featuring a good singer. Makes sense in our battle, with no need for being sentimental.

Puhdys - Wenn Ein Mensch Lebt (If A Human Is Alive) - 1973 (33) (3G, 4S, 3B, 3T)
a cool and clever mainstream stomper in best early 70s tradition, GDR or not. Suspicion of plagiarism annoying for homegrown voters only.

Leningrad Cowboys feat. Alexandrov Red Army Ensemble - California Girls - 1993 (30) (3G, 3S, 2B, 5T)
Nothing can destroy an excellent song, not Finnish jokers nor the Red Army.

Karat - Sieben Bruecken - 1978 (27) (2G, 2S, 4B, 5T) 
a polarizer. People's antenna could receive the very special vibes, or they couldn't. Epic ballad or schmalzy melancholism. A strong tinner, regarding the score.

Aggregate: 130 = 13 voters

And here's the lesson I've learned from my iron curtain week experiment. I'd like to let you participate at least.

It's a risk to set a local subject because people will be interested in locally focused battles, or they won't like them at all. In case of Germany, a few people were highly interested. Dealing with Berlin in particular. Others weren't, holding themselves back from this week's battle which is legitime. Might be due to the country's lacking relevance in international pop music (which is indisputable), might be due not feeling like flattering a foreign country at all (which is understandable). This results in low numbers, with hardly any chance for playoffs.

By the interested fraction, former GDR rock music isn't regarded as complete garbage, which is what I wanted to check out. Lyrics is important. As soon as an adequate translation plus some explanation was available, prejudices would fall because of respectable lyrical and musical quality. This resulted in very interesting discussions that sometimes were more important than the voting.

What you don't get is all the pathos connected to those bands. Having been pioneers in emancipating German language rock songs is being respected, whereas being the flea in the communist cat's coat is not so important. No problem, why should people be interested in that. I showed to be unable to understand particular issues of other countries either.

What has won in the end was objectivity and musical quality, not politics. This is an award for Tamara Danz and Silly. And that's what I like about the battle because I can learn a lot from it.

I want to thank you all for being patient and playing my special game. Next time there will be no such battle abuse.

End and over (?).

please feel free to edit this post if necessary. I will have to start my working week shortly, not being able to react before the sun is sinking. StKilda's week has already started.

Darren J. Ray

Posts: 3,431
Reply with quote  #37 
A postal vote from paul g adsett:

almost got me thinking good thoughts about being european this did.
almost made up for feeling awkwardly, sadly, angrily embarrassed about being british.
almost got me waving my arms about in ecstasy.
almost got me screaming in agony.
almost got me googletranslating.
certainly got under my skin.
up my nose.
down my lug 'oles...
there's real life beyond english language popdom.
gold: Puhdys - Wenn Ein Mensch Lebt
- a favourite gibb tune
and that brings it to the top,
regardless of what the lyrics are going on about.
i like the vocals.
i like the arrangement.
i like the whole caboodle
(other than the too abrupt fade ending)
whatever the lyrics are going on about...
a hit in any fashion.
silver: Leningrad Cowboys - California Girls
- a great lovingly tongue in cheek, pisstake.
a bit of a cheat as i) they're not german, ii) they sing in english,
but, you're forgiven. they're a hoot
(the second verse lets it down a bit by sounding too much like a poor serious tribute vocal).
touches of bonzo dog controlled, jazz humorous anarchy. 
live the leningrad cowboys were truly a sight and sound to behold.
tackily grandiose and grandly oh so tacky....
a hit in my book.
bronze: Silly - Verlorene Kinder  
- genuinely liked it at first,
despiite (or because of?) its 'within in you without you' intro.
there's the odd bit that continues to appeal in the arrangement,
but it's ardent yet humourless bollocks.
the makings of a hit.
tin: Karat - 7 Bruecken
- not often i've heard a german language song that could just as easily be a 'hit'
 by any of those inidiously awful, unentangleable outifts like 
foreigner / boston / journey / air supply / styx / survivor... 
and thank heavens i've not often heard 'em, 
'cos i actively choose not to, m'self.
fine for others, maybe. 
but not for me, ta.
a miss that i don't miss.
an enjoyable dalliance in europe
in a week where our govt has attempted to create 
a yet more bollocking mess of its flailing attempt to appease the unappeasable
and a rally and petition have been the only others uplifting moments. 
thankyou, cantina m...
Darren J. Ray

Posts: 3,431
Reply with quote  #38 
I didn't like the intro - I was waiting for her to sing "We were talking"  a la George.

Note to self: Probably not a great idea to read Battle comments for the first sitting in a cafe, drinking coffee. The coffee very nearly didn't stay in my mouth for my laughing. 

Darren J. Ray

Posts: 3,431
Reply with quote  #39 
Well done and really well hosted, Cantina. 

I've edited your last post to include the final scores which also include Paul's votes. 

Great editorial on the week, too. 

It was the first Battle appearance for all acts - a rarity these days. 

Ironically, your personal Gold, 'Über sieben Brücken mußt du geh'n', is your only possible play-off contender based on those scores, and it's still very early days.

The song 'California Girls' has been used just the twice before; both times, the Beach Boys version. 

Its previous record:

- a Gold in Week 26 of Season III, 1st in Preliminary Final, 3rd (Season Bronze) in Gold Play-Off (Kevin Witts),
- a Gold in Week 1 of Season VIII (Cindy Hood)

In the Ultimate Battle, conducted after five seasons of the Battle wherein the three annual medal winners took part, 'California Girls' came a respectable 4th. All other songs in the first nine place getters have won a season now, although it should be noted that the version of 'Surf's Up' that came 6th in the Ultimate Battle was from Surf's Up and not the Season VII winner from The Smile Sessions.   

These were the scores (from 28 voters).....

1. God Only Knows (The Beach Boys - 1966) (Season II Gold - Cynthia D. Hood) (six 1st places*) - 318.5 

2. Good Vibrations (The Beach Boys - 1966) (Season I Gold - Cynthia D Hood) (nine 1st places++) - 305

3. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (The Beach Boys - 1966) (Season III Gold - Cindy Hood) (two 1st places+) - 257.5

4. California Girls (The Beach Boys - 1965) (Season III Bronze - Kevin Witts) (nil 1st places) - 231

5. Don’t Worry Baby (The Beach Boys - 1964) (Season III Silver - Teenage Symphony) (two 1st places) - 221

6. Surf’s Up (The Beach Boys - 1971) (Season II Silver - Cynthia D Hood) (four 1st places*) - 220

7. Surfer Girl (The Beach Boys - 1963) (Season IV Gold - Jo McGuire) (two 1st places) - 191

8. I Get Around (The Beach Boys - 1964) (Season V Gold - bonnie bella) (two 1st places) - 186.5

9. The Warmth of the Sun (The Beach Boys - 1964) (Season I Silver - Tom Tobben; Season V Silver - Jo McGuire) (one 1st place) - 186

10. In My Life (The Beatles - 1965) (Season V Bronze - Tom Tobben) (two 1st places*) - 185

11. Heroes & Villains (The Beach Boys - 1967) (Season I Bronze - t Bedford) (two 1st places+) - 183.5

12. Penny Lane (The Beatles - 1967) (Season IV Silver - Al Forsyth) (nil 1st places) - 177

13. Fun, Fun, Fun (The Beach Boys - 1964) (Season IV Bronze - Kevin Witts) (nil 1st places) - 144.5

14. The Little Girl I Once Knew (The Beach Boys - 1965) (Season II Bronze - Verden McCutcheon) (nil 1st places) - 133.5

* includes a three-way tie for 1st place
+ includes a two-way tie for 1st place
++ includes two two-way ties for 1st place

Please continue to support your hosts. 
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