Welcome to my inaugural post for
BATTLE OF THE BANDS
BATTLE OF THE BANDS (BOTB), hosted by Far Away Series and StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands. is where you listen to different recordings of the same song and vote for the one you like best. Two “Battles” per month, on the 1st and 15th. Votes will be tallied and posted the following week. (See below for further details.)
For my first time, I’ve selected a song that most of you probably know,
but possibly not some of the versions I’m going to present here.
HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN
[for reference only – do not vote on these 4 examples]
If this is too long, please go ahead and scroll down to the voting section.
I’ll try not to be offended. 😉 You could always come back another time.
This was likely an old English, Scottish or Irish folk song, that had been brought to Appalachian America by British settlers a hundred or more years before. Also known as “The Rising Sun Blues”, the words were obviously altered, as New Orleans was the den of iniquity in the old South. (Some may argue it still is. 😉 On the travel bucket list!)
The first known recording, as “Rising Sun Blues”, was by Clarence “Tom” Ashley and Gwen Foster in 1933. Ashley said he learned it from his grandfather. That version is quite different from what we’re used to. See original lyrics HERE. The familiar melody and title, “House of the Rising Sun” was initially issued by Libby Holman and Josh White in 1942.
Considered to be one of the most recorded songs in history (it’s in the Public Domain), there are versions by Roy Acuff, Woody Guthrie, Lead Belly, Glenn Yarbrough, Pete Seeger, Frankie Lane, Andy Griffith, Joan Baez, Dave Van Ronk*, Nina Simone, Jody Miller, Dolly Parton, Five Finger Death Punch and many more….
Bob Dylan included the Dave Van Ronk* adaptation on his debut album, released in 1962. The most successful rendition is the one released by Eric Burdon (one of my musical heroes ♥) and The Animals in 1964. From Wikipedia: It became the first “British Invasion” number one hit that wasn’t a Beatles song, ranked number 122 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list and is also one of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. Apparently, Dylan stopped playing it after that, because his version got relegated to “cover” status. Dave Van Ronk was vexed not to get credit for both arrangements. Eric Burdon claimed he first heard the song in Newcastle, England, performed by a folk singer named Johnny Handle.
The foregoing serves as background information only.
Now, on to the actual contest……
A Detroit area Blues Rock Band, Frijid Pink formed in 1967. Their first two singles went nowhere, but they hit it big with this hard-rocking interpretation. It reached the top 10 on the (U.S.) Billboard Top 100 in the Spring of 1970 and sold over one million copies. Not bad for what was merely a “filler” song at the end of a recording session! They were so popular at the time, that Led Zeppelin opened for them at Detroit’s Grande Ballroom. The band broke up in 1975 and subsequent attempts to reunite were unsuccessful.
The White Buffalo
with The Forest Rangers
Singer/songwriter Jake Smith uses the professional moniker, “The White Buffalo”, both singularly and for his band. An imposing figure with an impressive baritone, he writes about rebels and troubled souls, battling through life. Producers of the TV drama, “Sons of Anarchy” (lots of rebels and troubled souls there!), used six of his songs in their soundtrack. This was recorded together with the show’s house band, known as “The Forest Rangers” for the fourth season finale. Lyrics were altered to suit the story. Another version of the song, featuring “Battleme” was used earlier on.
Please state your preference in comments below and also why you chose it.
As an experiment, I added this polling widget, set to “anonymous voting” for ease of use.
We’ll see how that goes.
Click on your preference here too:
[socialpoll id=”2270727″ path=”/polls/2270727″ width=”350″]
Voting remains open until 6:00 p.m. EDT. May 21st, after which I will count the votes, add mine and publish the results.
These are the other BOTB regulars and semi-regulars.
Please cruise on by their sites and, if they have a post up, vote on their selections as well:
[Check back – there’s no set posting time]
* HOSTS *
As always, “Sharing is Caring”.
Spread this musical joy all over your social networks. Hashtag is #BOTB
Until next time.
Come on back to The Den on Monday, May 18 and enjoy some Blood, Boobs and Carnage fun!