.
Welcome back, my friends, to the "Battle" that never ends.
We're so glad you could attend. Come inside! Come inside!
.
This is 'BATTLE OF THE BANDS' ('BOTB') where you listen to different recordings of the same song and vote for the one you like best. A new Battle gets posted on the 15th of each month and six days later, on the 21st, I place my own vote, tally 'em all up and announce the winner.
.
Friend? Foe? Stranger? No matter, ALL are welcome. So pull up a chair, pour yourself 24 oz. of 'DOG BITE High Gravity Lager' (or the poison of your choice) and turn it up to Eleven!
.
[NOTE: Links to the first year of 'BOTB' (#1 - #24) can be found at the very bottom of this page.]

Monday, September 15, 2014

'BATTLE OF THE BANDS: 2014, SEPTEMBER 15' (Or, 'SARAH VAUGHAN VS. WILLIE NELSON')

.
Republican Vs. Democrat, Male Vs. Female, War Vs. Peace, Light Vs. Dark, Good Vs. Evil, Man Vs. Machine, Love Vs. Hate, Dog Vs. Cat, Sun Vs. Moon, Brain Vs. Brawn, Oscar Vs. Grammy, Angel Vs. Demon, Laurel Vs. Hardy, Beer Vs. Wine, TV Vs. Radio, Pitcher Vs. Batter, Paper Vs. Plastic, Reality Vs. Fantasy, Yeshua Vs. Beelzebub, Conservative Vs. Liberal, You Vs. Me, House Vs. Senate, Offense Vs. Defense, Kramer Vs. Kramer, Spy Vs. Spy, Fischer Vs. Spassky, W.C. Fields Vs. Sobriety, Harold Gimpy, Jr. Vs. Sheldon J. Pismire, Rock Vs. Paper Vs. Scissors, Islam Vs. Everything, Singer Vs. Singer, Band Vs. Band...
. 
THE BATTLE OF THE BANDS! (‘BOTB’) 
. 
. 
Shoop-Shooby –
Shooby-duh-Dooby-Doop-Dooby-Dooby-Doo-Wah – 
Buh-Doo-Wah! 
. 
Yes, it’s time once again for ‘Battle Of The Bands’ (‘BOTB’) 
. 
Alright, let’s get on it... 
. 
EUGENE  MARTONE  VS.  JACK  BUTLER
. 
As you'll recall, my longtime friend Arlee Bird used the great 'SEPTEMBER SONG' in his last 'BOTB' installment, featuring Anjelica Huston and Lou Reed. I got to thinking: I wonder what would happen if someone used 'SEPTEMBER SONG' with singers? (Don't hate me, Lee. You know that sarcasm is like oxygen to me and without it I would die.) 
. 
'SEPTEMBER SONG' really became something personal to me in September of 1992. I knew that in early October I would be moving out of state, and that would end the five-year relationship I'd had with an old flame. At that time I owned an album that included 'September Song' and I listened to it often in that last month, experiencing the deep melancholy of those lines: 
. 
...the days grow short 
When you reach September 
When the Autumn weather 
Turns leaves to flame … 
Oh, the days dwindle down 
To a precious few … 
And these few precious days 
I'll spend with you 
.
Just reading and hearing those lyrics makes me sad all over again. 
. 
So, I give you 'SEPTEMBER SONG', first with Sarah Vaughan. She was an American jazz singer, described by music critic Scott Yanow as having "one of the most wondrous voices of the 20th century." 
.
Sarah Vaughan, nicknamed 'Sassy' and 'The Divine One', worked with some of the most renowned musicians from the classic Jazz era and her name is frequently mentioned in the same breath with Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, and Dinah Washington (which is a pretty healthy breath, but I've tested it and it can be done).
.
According to Wackypedia:
. 
Fellow jazz singer Mel Tormé said that Vaughan had "...the single best vocal instrument of any singer working in the popular field." Her ability was envied by Frank Sinatra who said that "Sassy is so good now that when I listen to her I want to cut my wrists with a dull razor." The New York Times critic John S. Wilson said in 1957 that Vaughan possessed "what may well be the finest voice ever applied to jazz."
.
“Her voice had wings: luscious and tensile, disciplined and nuanced, it was as thick as cognac, yet soared off the beaten path like an instrumental solo... her voice was a four-octave muscle of infinite flexibility...” 
~ Gary Giddins 
.
Vaughan recorded 'September Song' more than a couple times during her career, but here is my favorite of them:
. 
SARAH VAUGHAN – 'SEPTEMBER SONG' 
. 

. 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJBlG3V2B_w 
.

GODZILLA  VS.  KING  KONG
. 
In 1976, Country “outlaw” Willie Nelson, in conjunction with Waylon Jennings, Jessi Colter and Tompall Glaser, released the collection 'Wanted! The Outlaws'. It became Country music's first certified platinum album. 
. 
So when you've got a really good thing going you play it safe and stick with it, right? Not if you're a “Country Outlaw” and not if you're also Willie Nelson! 
. 
A year later, Willie had made up his mind to record a collection of American pop standards. Here's what Wackypedia sez about 'Stardust' (1978):
.
Willie Nelson asked his neighbor Booker T. Jones [of the great R&B/Soul group 'Booker T. & The MGs'] to arrange "Moonlight In Vermont". Pleased by the results, Nelson later asked Jones to produce an entire standards album for him. Nelson selected his ten favorite pop songs from his childhood. [He] also picked for the album "Georgia On My Mind", "Blue Skies", "All Of Me", "Unchained Melody", "September Song", "On The Sunny Side Of The Street", "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" and "Someone To Watch Over Me". The executives of Columbia Records were not convinced that the album would sell well, because the project was a radical departure from his earlier success in the outlaw movement.” 
. 
It was recorded in just nine days. ... Nelson won a Grammy Award for "Georgia on My Mind". 'Stardust' was on the Billboard's Country Album charts for ten years - from its release until 1988. The album also reached number one in New Zealand and number five in Australia in 1980. In 2003, the album was ranked number 257 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. It was originally certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America in December 1978. In 1984, when it was certified triple platinum, Nelson was the highest-grossing concert act in the United States. In 2002, the album was certified quintuple platinum. 
. 
Not too shabby for an album that some "observers predicted ... would ruin his career", eh?
. 
'Orange Coast' praised Nelson's performance of the standards: "Willie Nelson is perhaps the finest male singer in Country music [...] his phrasing and sense of understated drama have caused him to be compared with the best jazz singers. [...] 'Stardust' [is] a pleasurable showcase of his considerable artistry as a vocalist. 
. 
Nelson uses a variety of music styles to create his own distinctive blend of country music, a hybrid of jazz, pop, blues, rock and folk. His "unique sound", which uses a "relaxed, behind-the-beat singing style and gut-string guitar", and his "nasal voice and jazzy, off-center phrasing", has been responsible for his wide appeal. 
.
You know this concept of contemporary music stars like Linda Ronstadt and Rod Stewart putting their stamp on Pop Standards? Well, this is where that idea got its start. Take it away, 
Wee Wrinkled Willie: 
. 
WILLIE NELSON – 'SEPTEMBER SONG' 
. 

. 

.

RIDDLER  VS.  BATMAN
.
Alright now, “you know the gig”... I welcome EVERYONE to vote for their favorite of these songs in the comment section below. And feel free to tell us WHY you chose one song over the other. (NOTE: Comment Moderation is activated. All submitted comments that do not transgress "Ye Olde Comment Policy" will be posted as soon as possible. Thanks for taking the time to comment.) 
. 
After voting here, I suggest - actually I insist - you pop over to the blogs of the other 'BATTLE OF THE BANDS' participants to see which songs they have chosen and vote there also. (If their ‘BOTB’ blog bits aren’t posted yet, pour yourself two shots of ‘Grand Marnier’ over ice – do it twice – and then return to their blogsto vice your voice ...vote your vice ...voice your vote.) 
. 
Voice Your Vote @ ‘FAR AWAY SERIES’ by clicking HERE.
@ ‘TOSSING IT OUT’ by clicking HERE.
@ ‘YOUR DAILY DOSE’ by clicking HERE.
@ ‘DISCCONNECTED’ by clicking HERE.
@ 'A WRITER'S LIFE IN PROGRESS' by clicking HERE.
@ ‘CREATIVE OUTLET OF STRATPLAYER’ by clicking HERE.
@ 'MIKE'S RAMBLINGS' by clicking HERE. 
@ 'CURIOUS AS A CATHY' by clicking HERE.
@ 'THE SOUND OF ONE HAND TYPING' by clicking HERE.
@ 'ALEX J. CAVANAUGH' by clicking HERE. 
. 
As I've done in the past, I will continue to return to my 'BOTB' blog bits on the 7th and 21st of each month to post my own votes and announce the winners in the comment sections. 
. 
~ Stephen T. McCarthy 
. 
YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.

46 comments:

  1. OK, StevieMac, I have to give you props -- your craziness has a brilliant logic all its own. When I first read this, I confess that I thought, "The man just paired one of the greatest singers in the history of music against scraggle-voiced Willie Nelson???? Pffft -- this will be like watching Michael Jordan take on Don Knotts in basketball!"

    But after listening, I have to admit that I was too quick to pre-judge, and I've never given Willie his fair due. Willie's understated vocals work really, really well in this song. His aged voice gives the song a special poignancy -- you can tell as an older man, he feels the weight of having those "few precious days" left. He stays true to the meaning of the song and I really, really liked it.

    Sarah of course has an amazing, incredible voice, and it's clearly on display here. But while the playing in Sarah's version is great, it's perhaps a little too peppy during the horn and flute breaks -- it loses that melancholy vibe that the lyrics of the song conveys. And her ending of the song after the solos with the jazzy messing with the melody doesn't feel quite right to me -- impressive vocal control as you would expect, but again, it clashes with the intent of the song, I think.

    So I leave this BOTB with a much improved level of respect for Willie, and I find his rendition of the song much more poignant, and I of course love the guitar part, and somehow I find myself voting for him over Sarah freakin' Vaughn!

    So this September, color me amazed. my friend.

    Breat BOTB!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CHRIS ~
      Ha!
      "Thanks", sez I, as I bow deep down from the waist, keeping my back straight, doffing my Stetson and slowly waving it outward and then downward, underneath my lowered torso.

      I've always been crazy but it's kept me from going insane. And my craziness has a name all its own: McLOGIC. It's sometimes fast, sometimes half-fast, sometimes half-assed, but never to be confused with fast food and the colors yellow and brown.

      And suddenly all the praise for and sales of Willie's 'Stardust' album don't seem so incomprehensible, eh?

      How 'bout that harmonica touch, that added another light layer of melancholia and faded Sunlight?

      Thanks for your vote and your (as always) detailed analysis.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  2. Did you and FAE have this theme planned?

    Good pairing and a tough one. As I started out listening to Sarah I figured she had it cinched with that cool mellow jazz opening. Hard to beat her singing.

    Then I listened to Willie's version after not having heard it for several years. I'd forgotten how good it is. The instrumental opening is even better than Sarah's to my ears. His vocal conveys the poignancy needed for the subject matter of the song.

    Sarah's version has a few odd places with some mildly annoying affectations in her vocals--but don't get me wrong, it's outstanding. But Willie's version is near perfect.

    Almost as good as Lou Reed! (just had to toss that out)

    I cast my vote for Willie Nelson.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :-)
      LEE ~
      Yeah, Lou Reed's got some serious competition. He better be lookin' over his shoulder.

      A theme planned with FAE? Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Willis?--- I mean, Boidman? Why? What songs did FAE use? I haven't been to her blog yet. I'm going to yours right now though.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  3. Unfortunately I am swayed by the fact there is just one style of music I don't like - country. So Vaughan wins it for me.
    However, in Godzilla versus King Kong, we all know the giant lizard would serve up a dish of fried ape.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ALEX ~
      Well, Willie may be a Country singer, but I would not classify what he's doing with THIS song as "Country".

      I agree with your Godzilla / King Kong assessment but that's ONLY because Godzilla is a fire-breathing dragon. If you take Godzilla's bad breath away and put the two on equal footing, I say Kong would be king.

      Who do you think would win in a fight, Barney Fife or Gomer Pyle?

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
    2. Gomer easy -- he's had Marine training.

      And MJ would kick Barney's ass on the basketball court, too.... ;)

      Delete
    3. CHRIS ~
      Hmmm... Not sure. Methinks that may have been a lot of wasted Marine training.

      Alright then, how about Barney Fife versus Malcolm Merriweather? - Marquis of Queensberrry rules, of course.
      [;-)}

      I saw your reference to 'not voting against Sarah Vaughn THREE TIMES today' at FAE's blog and I thought: Three? What's he talking about? It's just two.

      But I just came from John Holton's 'BOTB' blog bit... and now I understands. What a Vaughanny coincidence!

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
    4. I'm with Alex on not loving country, but I agree that this song doesn't sound country when Willie does it. :)

      Delete
    5. Who would win a fight-Bambi versus Godzilla?

      Delete
    6. Godzilla would win but ONLY because Bambi would never see him coming.

      But I think The Killer Rabbit would tear Godzilla a new one!

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
    7. << insert voice of John Cleese as "Tim the Wizard" >>

      "Well, that's no ordinary rabbit! That's the most foul, cruel, and bad-tempered rodent you ever set eyes on!"

      << close insert >>

      Delete
    8. Ha! Now that doesn't surprise me. I'd be willing to bet that I don't have a single friend who does not like Monty Python.

      My personality (if we may call it that) being what it is, I think a person would need to appreciate MP in order to "get" me in any way, shape or form.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  4. Another Willie Nelson vs. Sarah Vaughan battle! Sarah gets my vote here as well; I don't feel like Willie is into this one very much.

    John Holton
    The Sound Of One Hand Typing

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Okie-Dokie, thanks for the vote, JOHN.
      It's 2 votes to 2 votes... for now.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  5. Willie gets my vote. Can't explain, it just is. I'm a fan of Sarah, but after Billie, and Dinah, and Ella.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. D.G. ~
      I understand. Sometimes one can't quite 'splain it, "it just is".

      Thanks for your ongoing 'BOTB' support!

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  6. Sarah is great for a sophisticated, refined musical palette...which means of course I vote for Willie. I've never heard him do a ballad I didn't like in some fashion. While Pancho and Lefty is more my speed, I'll stick with him here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha!
      Alrighty, BROTHER MARTIN. Your unsophisticated, unrefined vote has been recorded.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
    2. Just had to add I love Pancho and Lefty too.

      Delete
    3. D.G. ~

      I had a great friend - as great a friend as anyone could ever hope for and greater than most folks ever find. His name was Kelly "Andy" Anderson and he committed suicide in 1986. (Over the years I wrote a couple tributes to him on my defunct blog.)

      Kelly was the biggest Merle Haggard fan Haggard ever had. And as you know, 'PANCHO AND LEFTY' is a duet with Haggard and Willie Nelson. On Kelly's birthdays and deathdays, I play 'Pancho And Lefty' to celebrate his life and our friendship. So that song is special to me.

      In case you were wondering, Kelly was Pancho and I was Lefty (I got left-y behind). The ONLY THING wrong with the lyrics is that I didn't go to Ohio; I went to Airheadzona:

      Livin' on the road my friend, is gonna keep you free and clean
      Now you wear your skin like iron
      Your breath as hard as kerosene
      You weren't your momma's only boy, but her favorite one it seems
      She began to cry when you said goodbye
      And sank into your dreams

      Pancho was a bandit boy, his horse was fast as polished steel
      He wore his gun outside his pants
      For all the honest world to feel
      Pancho met his match you know on the deserts down in Mexico
      Nobody heard his dyin' words, ah, but that's the way it goes

      All the Federales say, they could've had him any day
      They only let him slip away, out of kindness I suppose

      Lefty he can't sing the blues all night long like he used to
      The dust that Pancho bit down south ended up in Lefty's mouth
      The day they laid poor Pancho low, Lefty split for Ohio
      Where he got the bread to go, there ain't nobody knows

      All the Federales say, they could've had him any day
      They only let him slip away out of kindness I suppose

      The boys tell how old Pancho fell, and Lefty's livin' in cheap hotels
      The desert's quiet, Cleveland's cold
      And so the story ends we're told
      Pancho needs your prayers it's true, but save a few for Lefty too
      He only did what he had to do, and now he's growing old

      All the Federales say, they could've had him any day
      They only let him go so long, out of kindness I suppose

      A few grey Federales say, they could've had him any day
      They only let him go so long, out of kindness I suppose

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  7. I have not read the comments, so this may have come up-did you and FAE coordinate this week?

    Another tough choice, but I'm going to go with Sarah again-similar arrangements but her voice makes all the difference.

    LC

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. DISCDUDE ~
      Like George Washington, I cannot tell a lie:
      No, FAE and I did not coordinate our 'BOTB' selections this week. I'm just grateful for the fact that we luckily chose two different songs, even though we did select the two same singers.

      Thanks for your vote, Brother LC. (But... "similar arrangements"?)

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  8. These are both great - but I think Willie's is just a hint more beautiful. I like the strings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. TRISHA ~
      Many thanks for your vote! Please feel free to return with a vote and a comment any ol' time on 'Battle Of The Bands'!

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  9. I liked both versions. On the other battle that pitted these two artist against each other their version of the song they were covering did not grab me. Not the case here! Sarah gets my vote on this one but I enjoyed both!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, MIKE.
      This is turning into quite a "BATTLE!" At this point, I have truly lost any idea who might be winning. It feels like it might even be a tie right now. I don't count up the votes until I'm closing out the voting on a "Battle", but this one seems like it might be a photo finish.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  10. I think that Willie has the sort of voice that sounded old even when he was twenty. You know what I mean? Or maybe wise would be a better word. There is something in his voice that says, "I have lived." It isn't just about the years, but the experience.

    I really enjoyed his version of September Song. His voice, his inflection, the arrangement of the music... all of it made me feel time passing. Heck, I think I got substantially older while listening to it.

    In Florida, September doesn't feel all that different from August, so I tend to forget that this is a fall month. Next month it will begin to sink in... but it took me back to when I lived up north and September meant the shedding of old things. And change. So much change. Which always makes a person somewhat sad. We really do have difficulty letting things go... even the things that aren't so great.

    I voted for Sarah Vaughan over on FAE's blog. I liked the flair of that song. It made me tap my toe and put a smile on my face. And she has some pipes. But I didn't care for her nearly so much with this song.

    So, Willie easily gets my vote. Now I am going to cry into my pillow. I am just so saaaaad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ROBIN ~
      I know EXACTLY what you mean about Willie's voice. You're right, it seems infused with eons of experiences. Interestingly, there is a mystical side to Willie that few would imagine, and he is a very firm believer in the concept of reincarnation.

      Who knows, maybe there are lifetimes of experience to be found in the tone of Willie's voice.

      Robin, you really should take up beer-drinking. Believe me, it is so much more pleasant to cry in one's beer than into one's pillow.

      Thanks for the vote and the analysis.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  11. So I'm voting for Sarah Vaughan and my counterpart is voting for Willie Nelson, which is exactly as I had forecast on his part.

    You were partially right in your guess, in that I do like outlaw country (more so than regular country, anyhow) and that I do like jazz. But I like jazz, especially of this era, much more than I like Willie and his unique style of country. Maybe it's just because of my old soul, but I could listen to Sarah Vaughan all day. It's the kind of music that makes me really feel it, like I'm walking into a bar to meet my dame for a drink while this song plays on the jukebox. I tells ya I really was born in the wrong era.

    My cohort, on the other hand, is the opposite. While he likes both, he definitely likes Willie's brand of country more than he likes jazz of the 50s.

    So score one vote for each, and as we've been known to do in the past, add a couple more numbers that don't sway the contest one way or the udder but sure make those totals look a bit nicer. :)

    ~6B

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 6-B ~
      Yep, I like the increased numbers.

      Well, looks like a split decision. Guess my vote will probably be the deciding factor... again.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  12. I have never, ever liked Willie Nelson. Not even a tiny itsy-bitsy bit. In fact, if pressed hard, I like him less than Karen Carpenter... so that tells you something! Listening to Nelson is rather like an ice water emema to me.

    But after carefully listening to both versions here, I can honestly say that this is the best song I've ever heard that crusty old poop excrete from his vocal cords. I actually LIKED his version!

    Not enough to beat out Mel Torme's favorite, but it was not bad; his extremely crappy vocal contortions work pretty well on a sad song like this.

    So, a strong vote for a good voice: Vaughan. But not by the greatest margin in history, which was what I'd imagined.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sheboyganboy SixSixSix ~
      I accept your vote...
      assuming that it's the closest I'll ever get to a confession from you that you have no soul.
      [;-)}

      [Don't let the "winking face"
      fool ya. I meant what I said.]

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'
      ;-)

      [Ditto]

      Delete
    2. What?!?!? I SAID I liked his version!

      I guess my strong phrasing required a nuclear response, huh? But did ya HAVE to go with da "sixes?" That's below the... belt.

      I'll admit it: I have no sole. Or trout, or halibut. I don't eat fish.

      Delete
    3. 666 ~
      I don't eat fish either. Which obviously means that when I go fishing... it's all about the beer.

      Ha!-Ha!
      While I was posting that comment last night, I was shaking my head at the wonder I'd never thought of that SixSixSix joke any of the previous times when you've taken a shot at my goddess, Karen Carpenter.

      Obviously just teasin' ya, Bro. If I hadn't said sumpin' snarky you could have rightly assumed that aliens had abducted me and whisked me away in their saucer, replacing me with an impostor STMcC.

      Bein' serious now (which is easier than bein' green), I appreciate yer vote as always, and your ongoing support of 'BOTB' even amidst great busyness.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  13. I’ve refrained from commenting here for a number of reasons, but mostly because I didn’t want to tip my hand in my own BOTB. At this point in time most likely nobody but you will read this and I’m pretty sure you already know how I will vote here, and at my own space.

    When I was looking for someone to pit against Willie for ‘All of Me’, I did like Sarah’s version better than others, because it was very different (from Willie’s), but when it comes to female blues/jazz singers I’m not sure what everybody is going on about. Yeah, she has quite a range, but so often there doesn’t seem to be much emotion behind it – just someone singing some spectacular notes. It seems to me that with enough training there are a lot of people who can do that, some without a lick of training.

    BUT, it’s the ability to confer feeling, emotion, the heart and soul of a song, that makes a difference; at least for me.
    I’m sure you had no doubt that my vote would go to Willie. I like him A LOT and STARDUST ranks up there as at least one of my top ten favorite albums of all time, no make that one of my top three favorites. More than just liking Willie and his style, it’s his ability to interpret a song so that you believe what he’s singing. There’s a sincerity that is so often lacking. Maybe it’s because he really doesn’t have the vocal ability of other singers that he works harder to put more of himself into it. Maybe it’s just me.

    Nice job on the background info in this post. I had read some of those thing, but didn't take the time to include them at my space. I appreciate reading it and hope the people who also stopped by my place had a chance to get all of this back story also.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Excellent comment, FAE!

      Thanks so much.

      Yes, of course I knew that you would vote "Willie". You have more than touched on some things here that I intend to also address when it comes to placing my own vote and totaling 'em all up to determine the winner on the 21st.

      This "Battle" feels really close and it ain't over yet. There may be a few more votes to trickle in (I know I've yet to hear from Cathy and Al Bondigas - neither of their votes can I guess at), so whoever is ahead at this point may not necessarily be the winner.

      Thanks again for the detailed analysis. See ya on the 21st.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  14. Though Sarah Vaghan was known for her unique style of jazz, I thought she was a little too over the top for September Song. I've never been a Willie Nelson fan, but his understated version adds sincerity to this melancholy song. Willie gets my
    vote!

    Is it just me, or is the Riddler wearing his boxing trunks up too high?

    Julie

    Julie

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JULIE, JULIE, JULIE ~
      Ha! You're right, the Riddler's got 'em ridin' high. The cheater! He knows that "hitting below the belt" is not allowed, so he's fixed it that Batman can't "hit him in the midriff". (By the way, that line was stolen directly from W.C. Fields.)

      Hey, thanks a million for casting a vote here. (That's a million thanks, NOT a million dollars.)

      Please feel free to vote on 'Battle Of The Bands' any time. We post new "Battles" every 1st and 15th of each month.

      Willie thanks ya! (Would you have been voting for the Riddler if his trunks weren't so high?)

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  15. Al Bondigas here. I barely give willie the edge. Although I usually fall in love with these kind of wistful, melancholic type of songs, this song was just ok to me. Loved the images though. That's it, that's my rulin'.

    ReplyDelete
  16. AL BONDIGAS ~
    Why, I oughta...

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  17. STMcC’s Vote On ‘BOTB - 2014, September 15th
    - Sarah Vaughan Vs. Willie Nelson’
    And The Final Tally:


    First of all, my sincere thanks to EVERYONE who voted. This is about as many votes as I've ever received on a 'BATTLE OF THE BANDS' blog bit.

    This one started out really close and remained close midway through it, but in the last third... WILLIE NELSON blew past Sarah Vaughan like she was standin' still.

    'STARDUST' by Willie Nelson has been one of my most frequently played albums for a couple decades now. And while I DO like Sarah Vaughan's version of 'SEPTEMBER SONG' quite a bit (and Jazz is my favorite form of music), there's just no way it stacks up against Willie's version.

    FAE stole much of my "comment thunder" (see above) but I'll add a wee Willie bit mo'...

    When you get right down to it, singing a song is about conveying an idea and/or mood; the "be all and end all" is NOT about a singer's range - how many octaves they can jump or notes they can sing clearly. It's all about reaching the listener with an idea, conveying a mood or feeling.

    If a singer can do that while impressing the bejeezus out of you with their range and vocal tricks, more power to them. But if the idea, feeling and/or mood gets lost in all the fancy vocal gymnastics, then the singer has failed at their single most important task when they undertook the responsibility of singing the song.

    With 'SEPTEMBER SONG', Sarah Vaughan DOES NOT FAIL! She does a great job, in my opinion. In fact... I sent an Email to my friend FarAwayEyes while we were in the process of conspiring to use both Willie Nelson and Sarah Vaughan in this 'BOTB' installment. (Yes, of course George Washington told a lie, and yes, of course FAE and I conspired on this 'BOTB' installment!)

    In one E to FAE I wrote the following about the Sarah Vaughan recording I used in this blog bit:

    "It's very Jazzy (which will probably bother some voters) and there's a really excellent extended instrumental section in the middle. Another thing about this version that I think will turn off some voters is that near the end she does this trick with her voice on one word. I expect one or more voters will say they don't like this vocal effect, but I like it because I'm sure that what she had in mind was making her voice represent a falling leaf, spiraling toward the ground."

    I suspect this must have been the thing (or one of the things) that my friend Arlee Bird had in mind when he wrote:

    "Sarah's version has a few odd places with some mildly annoying affectations in her vocals..."

    But the reason Willie wins this contest for me is for all the reasons FAE mentioned above, and because this song is about the "September" of one's life and/or the "September" of a love affair. We're yakking about the year coming to an end, the sun going down, long shadows, and the melancholia of the last grains of sand slipping down the neck of the hourglass.

    Now, with that in mind, listen to Willie Nelson sing this song again, and you'll hear the wrinkles in his voice that match the wrinkles on his neck and face and the sundown in his heart.

    Willie Nelson does the BEST version of 'SEPTEMBER SONG' that I have ever heard, and I've heard plenty of versions.

    Final Tally:
    Sarah Vaughan = 6 Votes
    Willie Nelson = 11


    Thanks again to ALL Y'ALL for voting.
    And please return in October (1st & 15th) because I have a couple interesting 'BOTB' match-ups scheduled (particularly the one on the 15th, which will be sumpin' new in the 'BOTB' realm).

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  18. At least this BATTLE turned out 'as is should be'.
    Thank you so very much for the kind shout-out/reference to my comments. It is and will remain my opinion that there is more to singing a song than the vocal vibrations of those 'twin infoldings of mucus membrane stretched horizontally across the larynx' (Alright, I looked that up!). Give me a gravelly voiced virtuoso who puts heart and soul into it over the acoustically acrobatic song bird any day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dang! You tellin' me that Willie lost to Sarah on 'ALL OF ME'? I thought he beat her easily on that one. I would have said that she was more competition for him on 'September Song'.

      Well, that's the thing about 'BOTB' - you just never know. Anything can happen... and usually does.

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'Loyal American Underground'

      Delete
  19. The majority got it right on this vote. I agree with the points that you and FAE make about singing technology. Sometimes simple conveys the message best.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. BOIDMAN ~
      I agree with that. (We gotta stop agreeing with each other or it could become a HA(!)bit.)

      ~ D-FensDogg
      'L.A.U.'

      Delete

---> NOTE: COMMENT MODERATION IS ACTIVATED. <---
All submitted comments that do not transgress "Ye Olde Comment Policy" will be posted and responded to as soon as possible. Thanks for taking the time to comment.