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Graciegirl

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Reply with quote  #31 

Gold - Gypsy Queen -  Country Radio (This song is in my top 10 list)

Silver - Stay - Ol’ 55

Bronze - Happy Without You - The Strangers
Tin - Endless Harmony - The Beach Boys

 

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Popeye (not the sailor)

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Reply with quote  #32 
My votes:

Gold: Endless Harmony - Beach Boys - Carl's vocals pulled a mediocre song out of a nose dive at the last minute.

Silver: Gypsy Queen - Country Radio

Bronze: Stay (While the Night is Still Young) - Ol’ 55

Tin: Happy Without You - Strangers - Happy I didn't have to listen to this annoying song all the way through.

Thanks Darren!
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bonnie bella

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Reply with quote  #33 
Darren, I have been trying to work out what is wrong with this weeks lineup, and by squinting my eyes I can now see the problem.  It's 75% Australian.  This is undoubtedly worse than my 50% week last year.

GOLD - TBB.  As far as bad songs go, this one isn't the most terrible.  Lovely harmonies at the end, but I relate to it about as well as that little penguin just by the toilet roll watching from the outside. 

SILVER - Ol' Fifty-Five (there's more than one way to skin a cat).  Semi-parody Australian boys who made it to the charts and because they could actually sing.  That's a really nice falsetto.  I seem to recall this came off an album called Punched in the Face, or something equally endearing.  Tries too hard, doesn't quite make it.

BRONZE - The Stranglers.  Yup.  They choked his one to death.  I share their sentiments entirely.  

TOTALLY TIN -  Country Road.  It's not that I don't tolerate country well, nor has it anything to do with 70's soft rock theme and matchy-match denim ensembles, it's just that it sounds like a whole lot of previously released songs of type cobbled together.  It might also be the country theme, 70's soft rock style, and washed-out head-to-toe jean catastrophes.  I'm not even going to mention the chicken that sacrificed its life to feather that coat.

Altogether, this week each contestant limped into line.  It seems the more serious they were about the music, the lower they scored.  Says a lot about overthinking things.

Avicii

youtube.com/watch?v=_ovdm2yX4MA








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Clowns divorce: custardy battle.     Simon Munnery

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Larry Franz

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Reply with quote  #34 
bonnie -- All that cavorting about is exactly how it was my last day of work, 8 1/2 years ago. [smile]

YouTube suggested this one to go along with your Avicii, probably because of David Byrne's attire and jitters.

Talking Heads, "Once in a Lifetime"
youtube.com/watch?v=5IsSpAOD6K8


PS: That's not true about 8 1/2 years ago. There was very little movement for a building that size.

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David W

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Reply with quote  #35 
My votes :

Gold:Gypsy Queen (Country Radio)
Silver:Endless Harmony (The Beach Boys) (For the last bit !)
Bronze:Happy Without You (The Strangers)
Tin:Stay (While the Night Is Still Young) (Ol’ 55)
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Darren J. Ray

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Reply with quote  #36 
Thanks to the recent contributors. 

I'll acknowledge you more fully after catching up on some much needed zeds. 

Larry, thank you very much. I'll have a good read tomorrow. 

Closing the polling booth within 16 hours.  

Please continue listening to the four songs and then make your adjudication. 
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Tom Tobben

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Reply with quote  #37 
Had to think about this battle's songs for a while. The one song I previously knew was readily my least favorite, so I had to sort out the rankings for my top three with no preconceptions:

Gold -- "Gypsy Queen", Country Radio. A fine enough acoustic country/rock song that is so much of its era. There were plenty artists and songs of a similar nature at the end of the sixties through mid-70s, and this one fits that mold quite nicely. Pleasant melody, good lead vocals and excellent harmonies, and a tasty, partly acoustic country rock arrangement. I'll give more examples from that period after casting my votes. 

Silver -- "Stay (While The Night Is Still Young)", Ol' 55. Another nice more typical pop song, with a good melody and lead vocal, rich harmonies, and a pleasant arrangement. The high/falsetto harmony vocal reminded me of some of Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons' group vocals. Good song. 

Bronze -- "Happy Without You", Strangers. If it weren't for the off-putting lead vocalist, the song certainly fits the late 60s pop radio feel. The harmonies don't seem as satisfying to me as the two above, but all in all a decent song, minus the lead vocals. (On the other hand, there were certainly some other distinctive, but more compelling, lead vocalists in late 60s pop/rock music (e.g., John Fogerty of Creedence, Alex Chilton of the Box Tops).

Bringing up the rear -- "Endless Harmony", Bruce Johnston/Beach Boys. The first 70% of the song is almost entirely a solo saccharine cocktail piano piece by Bruce, but with a harmonic Beach Boys tune tagged on to the last minute or so. If the first 2:16 of the song would have been eliminated and the last minute extended into a full "Beach Boys" song, I might have liked it better.  


A few more mostly country rock-styled harmony songs from the late 60s and early 70s:

"Country Girl" by the Ozark Mountain Daredevils (1973)


"Walk on Down the Road", Mason Proffit (1969)


"Here in My Loneliness", Gypsy (1970)


"The Wonder of It All", Heartsfield (1973)


"Some of Shelly's Blues" (written by Mike Nesmith), Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (1970)


"Easy to Be Free", Rick Nelson & The Stone Canyon Band (1970)



Interesting battle, Darren, and a chance to explore some music and artists that were new to me. 


 
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Lee Marshall

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Reply with quote  #38 
More...or...less...



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Al Forsyth

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Reply with quote  #39 
No theme?  I heard HIM last week at The Kate theater in CT.
Combines a LOT of influences and then you get this:

His influence comes up in a song:
youtube.com/watch?v=_E3VqmyNgVU
And:


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A diamond necklace played the pawn...
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paul g adsett

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Reply with quote  #40 
did i mishear, or was some bloke singing
'there's nothing left to salivate'?
i think my ears have been irrevocably damaged.
splattered and battered by this week's platters.
i've humm'd and hah'd,
pondered and despondered,
gurged and regurged
before girding my loins to vote.
djr, you've truly bamboozled me.
i realise my votes quite often emerge in almost exactly the reverse fashion to yours,
but, however i shuffle the offerings this week cannot adequately reflect
the degree to which i'd prefer not to place any in any numerical order.
but, needs must, so i'll be brave.

gold: 'happy without you'
- surely you're tacking the micky!?!?!
what an abomination.
yet, i feel a strange frisson!
have i entered some bizarro world?
it's as if, someone, somewhere has rewritten all the rules
and my senses are working overtime in an attempt to realign the synapses
to accommodate the new reality...
er, no, third thoughts, those second thoughts were decidedly wonky.
this actually is appalling!
forget all the above - eradicate this vote.
start again...

gold: 'stay (while the night is young)'
- nope, i can't believe my eyes either.
or, rather, can't believe my ears.
this is a magnificent, overblown monstrosity.
throw in just about every clichay,
sweet boy vocal intro,
a guitar 'kerchang' and the developing line that leads to
an orchestral surge,
4seasonalistic vocal whooshes,
further sweet / kerjanglejar alternations,
would-be-delicate piano trinkles,
electric guitar break with piano crescendo
electric guitar break that ends in... a poignant moment of silence...
with return to acoustic sweetness,
stacatto 'ooo ooo ooo's,
orgasmic 'ay-ay-ay's and wild geetar thrash...
brilliant trash.
well, trash.
with a touch of brilliance.

silver: 'endless harmony'
- now, i do, honestly, really really like a few bruce j numbers
(dear, deeply missed, mat lock shared my love of 'disney girls').
and, as an attempt to cobble together and album that is, basically,
cobblers,
he did his best, i'm sure in tackling the task.
but, though he might've 'wrote the songs that...'
not every one was a surefire two thumbs up corker.
and, guess what...
here come the delicate electric piano tinkles with reverb.
yep, not a bad start.
if i were to want to write a soppy song,
i might well commence with a few such chords
as i strive to capture a vibe, maaan...
but, instead of 'west coast harmony',
we're subjected to some maudlin west coast slop,
'ooo ooo ooo's that sound more like the nocturnal emissions 
of discontented owls.
and endless poncy piano.
and, just when you hope it's over,
we get to be subjected to 'gawd bless americccaaa...'
overblown beyond belief!
but, ultimately,
worth waiting just for the final 'woow ooo' 10 seconds
as the air escapes from the collective lungs one last time.
a moment of bliss after too much huffin'n'puffin'.

joint tin (neither deserve the title 'bronze',
though they may share the points): 'gypsy queen'
- 'i dooby leave...' ?
i do like a good mandolin intro.
i do like the odd sweet harmonica break.
i do like goood olefashoned harmonies.
i do like a gentle orchestral sweep.
i do like a syncopated piano tinkle.
i do like a touch of countrified popular music with a rock touch.
oh, yes indeedy.
but,
gawd'elpme,
this is a truly dreadful combination of all the elements
that could've comprised a great record.
it's a rubbish song.
it's a rubbish travesty of a would-be commercial hit.
makes me yearn for the outpourings of bloomin' mumford and son.

joint tin: 'happy without you'
- surely you're tacking the micky!?!?!
what an abomination.
yet, i feel a strange frisson!
have i entered some bizarro world?
it's as if, someone, somewhere has rewritten all the rules
and my senses are working overtime in an attempt to realign the synapses
to accommodate the new reality...
er, no, third thoughts, those second thoughts were decidedly wonky.
this actually is appalling!
but, i like it...
no, no, no...
it's not in gold slot.

mission accomplished.
now, erase memories.
cheers



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paul g adsett

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Reply with quote  #41 
and so,
may i add a couple of numbers from albums
that i believe should make the end of year 'best of' lists:

bennett wilson poole
a veritable british supergroup
who're unafraid to quote their influences.
i've sorted a sunny brighton gig to open their september uk tour.
these chaps are 
robin bennett 
(of oxford's the dreaming spires / lecturer / truckfest organiser)
danny wilson 
(the phenomenal danny and the champs
and soon to be local co-owner of union record store lewes)
tony poole (he of fabled starry eyed and laughing,
janglymaster of the rickenbacker, whizzo producer, 
collaborator on tour last year with anny celsi, nelson bragg, duncan maitland
and due to record and tour again with them across uk
- i've booked 'em back at the greys, brighton in earlier september).


and, our dear chum from edinburgh, dean owens
whose latest album 'southern wind' has got so many excellent reviews
including rave comments and airplay from bob harris on the bbc.
he's been making great records in scotland, in new york and in nashville for years
and so good to see this one has really taken off.
dean played a house concert for us the night after his super london album launch gig
the other week.


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D.A.N

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Reply with quote  #42 
GOLD Stay

SILVER Happy Without You.  Seriously catchy.

BRONZE Endless Harmony.  I've probably heard this before once or twice.  It's no "Southern California"

TIN  Gypsy Queen.  The one I was most familiar with.  Finally figured out where I would have heard it - that classic hits radio station I listened to about 20 years ago.
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Darren J. Ray

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Reply with quote  #43 
OK....

Thanks, DAN. Al, 'no theme' doesn't mean the theme is 'no theme'. It means there is no theme.

But there is always a topic.  



kds, you quoted me (#27) and that was it(?)


Larry, I'm sure I used the long link, but when I 'copy video URL', it gives me a short one.

Bizarre.

Let's try it again...

youtube.com/watch?v=TXd_l9RsI6A  (Edit: Success! You're a star, Larry.)


Verden, great to see you on here, our good friend. And, yes, I think you're right about the vocalist. 


Graciegirl, thanks for voting. I knew I'd find another Aussie who loves 'Gypsy Queen'. I think most of us here do. It's a beauty. 


Popeye, thanks for voting. Hope you give 'Happy Without You' a full spin and check out the counter melody.

Here I am imagining everyone, like me, listening to songs they don't know for at least a few days on high rotation, out of respect for a host, even if they don't initially like them. It's the romantic in me. 


bonnie, lose the cultural cringe. Three of these songs are antipodean classics. 

PS It's the STRANGERS. One of them went on to write and/or produce nearly all of Olivia's hits, including 'Magic'. 

Quote:
it's just that it sounds like a whole lot of previously released songs of type cobbled together


Name one. 

You are cruisin' for a bruisin'. 


David, thanks for your votes, as always. Isn't it time you hosted another week? 


Tom, I think I know all the voters' preferences nine years into this. I certainly would've predicted you would give the most consideration to songs you didn't previously know and would've been shocked if you hadn't given 'Gypsy Queen' your Gold. Thank you VERY MUCH. 

Seems poor Terry Walker's voice is not to everyone's taste this week. 

Here he is after going solo in 1970 (channeling David Clayton-Thomas!) after lead guitarist John Farrar was recruited by the Shadows. 



Note to Aussies: Terry married the lovely Joanna Lockwood from the '70s TV drama Cop Shop

And drummer Garth Thompson is still trying to grow his sideburns. 


Paul, thanks for your votes and comments. Trust me, you've heard 'Happy Without You' before. This'll be the second time you've erased it from your memory.


DAN, Ol' 55 thank you for your Gold with this ordinary video of them getting molested...



And this is almost as good as 'Stay'...



A few favourable comparisons with Frankie Valli this week. I was sure that the American voters here would offer up Sha Na Na. 


Alrighty, DAN has sent me the scores. We balanced. 

The polling booth has closed. 

Posting scores and summary shortly. 


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Darren J. Ray

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Reply with quote  #44 

Results are:

Gold - Gypsy Queen (Country Radio - 1972) (46.5)
(6G, 4S, 3B + 1 tie (grrrr), 3T)


Silver - Stay (While the Night Is Still Young) (Ol’ 55 - 1977) (46)
(4G, 6S, 5B, 2T)

Bronze -Endless Harmony (The Beach Boys - 1980) (45)
(6G, 4S, 2B, 5T)

Tin - Happy Without You (The Strangers - 1968) (32.5)
(1G, 3S, 6B + 1 tie (grrrr), 6T)

Aggregate: 170 = 17 voters


Thanks very much to all who voted and to D.A.N for being my scrutineer. 


It was the first appearances for Country Radio, Ol’ 55 and the Strangers.


‘Endless Harmony’ is just the fourth track from Keepin' the Summer Alive to be used.

Its record: 

Keepin' the Summer Alive (a Tin in Week 31 of Season VII, 9th in Tin Play-Off - Cindy Hood),
School Day (Ring! Ring! Goes the Bell) (a Bronze in Week 27 of Season VIII - Cindy Hood), 
Goin’ On (a Bronze in Week 21 of Season III, 7th in Bronze Play-Off - Peter Simpson),
Endless Harmony (a Bronze in Week 11 of Season IX - Darren J. Ray)


As can be seen, none of the four have earned better than a Bronze, although two of the previous three have made play-offs, such is the favouritism towards most things Beach Boys here.

Indeed, with the highest percentage for a Bronze so far this year (26.47% of the vote), ‘Endless Harmony’ seems play-off bound as well.


And with the third highest points and third highest percentage (19.12) for a Tin after 11 weeks, ‘Happy Without You’ is borderline of making its play-off.

Several voters mentioned they had an issue with Terry Walker's lead vocal. I won't tell him if you don't. 


The upside for me was I found two ‘new’ songs (to most of you) that defeated, albeit narrowly, a Beach Boys track (that featured Carl Wilson, no less).

The downside is for either of those two songs to progress, the Beach Boys one will need to make its play-off and win it! (And that is highly doubtful, considering how much it polarised voters this time.)

Soap box time...

Personal opinion, I think weeks of songs with no common ‘theme’ make for a much tighter contest.

Instead, we often seem to get hosts opting for a Beach Boys related song about something (that’s often been used before) and then pitting it against songs with a similar theme (even if it's just a word in a title), regardless of the difference in quality between the four songs.

Again, that’s my personal opinion, but even a glance at previous results seems to bear that out.

This week was the second closest – admittedly, it’s a small sample size – so far this year in terms of margins between Gold and Silver and also Gold and Tin.

There will be naysayers who may suggest that was because all the songs were rubbish, but an inspection of the comments will show that not everyone felt that way and certainly not this host.

I say this mainly because, surely, we prefer close weeks as opposed to blowouts.

But there is also a part of me that yearns for most of the engagement of a week to actually be about the songs that a host has waited for weeks to present for everyone’s carefully considered adjudication.

I’m an idealist.


This week is closed (at least for voting).

Please support Tom’s Week 12. 

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Larry Franz

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Reply with quote  #45 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darren J. Ray
 I think weeks of songs with no common ‘theme’ make for a much tighter contest...

This week was the second closest – admittedly, it’s a small sample size – so far this year in terms of margins between Gold and Silver and also Gold and Tin.

There will be naysayers who may suggest that was because all the songs were rubbish, but an inspection of the comments will show that not everyone felt that way and certainly not this host.

I say this mainly because, surely, we prefer close weeks as opposed to blowouts.


Alternate explanation:

This week was very close because there were three songs from Australia (as far as I know) most of us had never heard before (unknown songs have a disadvantage) against an unloved Beach Boys song from one of their least-appreciated albums.

If the Beach Boys song had been closer to the norm, I bet it would have easily won, leaving the other three selections fighting for second place.

It's true that having a theme puts a constraint on which songs compete, but the constraints are often weak. I think the song selection plays a much more important role in the final results than whether there's a theme. In my own case, I try for balance among the four songs but usually fail to anticipate how other people will vote.

Anyway, having a tight battle for first place isn't everyone's goal. There are other goals as well, such as fun and sharing music we like. There might even be the goal of getting a favorite song into the final playoffs, which is the battle's ultimate competition and which conflicts with the goal of having four songs equally matched.

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