I respectfully acknowledge your thoughts, Larry, and thank you for them.
I just feel that when this started it was more about the four songs offered up by the host.
‘Sharing music we like’ was what, I thought, waiting one's turn and hosting a week was all about.
And participants were queuing up to host a week.
Some then felt compelled to use a common thread between the songs.
And it became the norm - people became obsessed with themes.
And instead of the weeks being about the four songs the host had put up for critique, the focus became, to some, about voting as quickly as possible and then spending the rest of the time trying to locate songs of their choice instead.
I literally listen to a host’s four songs on repeat for usually at least a couple of days before voting. I feel that even if I don’t initially like a song, I should try to find the beauty in it out of respect to the host.
‘Gimme Shelter’ is a great example of this. When it was first used in Season I, I hated it. My opinion changed after multiple listens.
To each his own but, yes, I feel ‘themes’ are constricting and rarely lead to close weeks.
To quote Lee Marshall, some weeks have been "'Good Vibrations' vs 'Tequila'".
If a host’s aim is to get one particular song into play-offs, I think people should see it for what it is and vote with their feet, i.e., walk away from the week and don’t vote. No song will make play-offs on a low voter turnout. (Look at the results from last year. This may have indeed happened.)
For me, a host’s songs getting into play-offs is a nice bonus and a way of acknowledging their efforts.
I realise you try for a balance between your songs.
I wish there was more of a reward for the hosts who come up with close weeks.
But four strong songs can make play-offs, as t Bedford demonstrated last year.
I just feel it would be nicer if everyone adopted that ideal, instead of preoccupying themselves with searching for a bloody theme in preference to posting four songs that will challenge the listeners.
If even the host truly doesn’t think one of their songs can win the week but fits a ‘theme’, what is the point? The week’s result will be a foregone conclusion before it even gets underway.
And as I’ve stated, last week was only the second week of the year where none of the songs had been regurgitated at least once before.
It contained three hit songs that – egads! – a lot of people here weren’t familiar with and – God forbid – didn’t have a theme!
You saw the reaction from a couple of participants.
I'm not trying to be personal or demeaning to any one here.
But I do wish for a change to the status quo of the same songs and, God help us, the same 'themes' being used over and over.
Again, am I being too idealistic that this will occur on a message board where the majority of the 20 or so participants are baby boomers and 'already know what they like'?
I hope not.
Paul, you heard a band play ‘Happy Without You’ on December 21st, 2016.