10 CommentsBattle of the Bands (BOTB), Blogfests, Music

Welcome back! It’s time to announce results for the Nov. 1 BOTB post

Battle of the Bands BOTB MacArthur Park

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.

This one pitted Boston-born Disco queen, Donna Summer
against Nashville Prog-rocker, Neal Morse

The Richard Harris original of “MacArthur Park” has always been a favourite of mine, even though the lyrics seemed nonsensical. A 7-minute song on the radio was a novelty in those days and it achieved cult status.

The only cover I knew of was Donna Summer’s, so that was an easy pick. Several others were too similar and then I discovered The Neal Morse Band. Their version elicited some interesting responses, ranging from “they nailed it” to “pretentious bullshit”. 😀 Sign of a good battle, yes? I knew this would be a close one!

It was going back and forth from the beginning and there was no clear frontrunner. Some of you are Donna Summer fans and enjoy the disco genre. Not me (with some exceptions) and I was quite startled to hear a favourite song turned into a disco number. Is nothing sacred? That said, her intro was lovely, but as soon as the familiar beat started…UGH! Needless to say, I voted for Neil Morse. His vocals weren’t the greatest, but the arrangement was! Well damn; not good enough!



By one vote!

BOTB MacArthur Park, The Doglady's Den

Another squeaker!

Here’s Donna, in a live performance:

Disco Diva 1977Even though disco isn’t my favourite genre, we sure had lots of fun back then, partying every weekend. Donna Summer’s music played a huge role in that, like it or not – and I did like some. These are two of her songs that bring back the most vivid memories. Listen to “I Feel Love” after a few drinks, or whatever…;) “Last Dance” was always played at closing time.

Don’t forget to check back with the others, for their BOTB results:

Angels Bark / Book Lover / Cherdo On The Flipside / Curious as a Cathy / DC Relief BOTB / Far Away Series / Holli’s Hoots & Hollers / J.A. Scott /Jingle Jangle Jungle / Mike’s Ramblings / Novel Brews / Quiet Laughter / Sound of One Hand Typing / StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands / Tossing It Out / Women: We Shall Overcome / Your Daily Dose


The Nov. 15 BOTB will go on as usual, elsewhere.

Don’t miss this exciting event on Monday, Nov. 9!

Fellow BOTBer, author Guilie Castillo-Oriard, will be my guest.
She’s just published her first solo book, called The Miracle of Small Things.
Read how her main character, Luis Villalobos, relates to “MacArthur Park”, below:

The Miracle of Small Things, Guilie Castillo-Oriard

“MacArthur Park” is a song that holds special meaning for Luis Villalobos, the book’s main character, who’s spent his adult life as a serial monogamist. As an international tax attorney, he lives a jet-set kind of gypsy life, never in one place more than a few years, and always with his eye on the next big financial center, the next tier of achievement. Most of his lovers understand this; most are part of the same world. In the song’s opening lines he sees the inevitability of the end… It can’t be helped, “spring was never waiting for us”. It’s a song that validates his belief that everything is transitory, nothing lasts, and it’s a mistake to believe otherwise. It takes a dog, rescued by accident, to show him that it’s not the length but the strength of the commitment that matters.”

Intrigued? Come back on Nov. 9 to learn more.

Did your favourite win? Were you surprised by the outcome?

Looking forward to your comments!

Until next time.



Rockchick Rapture!

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Debbie D.

Canine Innkeeper in suburban Toronto, Canada, known as “The Doglady”. Writer/website owner, photographer, animal lover, music fanatic, inveterate traveller. History, literature and cinema buff. Eternal “hippie/rockchick”. Binational, German/Canadian and multilingual. Looking for the next adventure!

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    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Birgit. Donna did have a nice voice and one can’t dismiss her contribution to the music scene. She was a huge star! I just didn’t like her messing with a favourite song. 🙂

  1. DEBBIE, you put together an excellent BOTB installment, and the 1-vote margin of victory total bears that out!

    I can’t believe someone would use the expression “pretentious bullshit” in a BOTB comment section. That’s pretty brash and insensitive, if you ask me. Remind me NEVER to visit that person’s blog!

    >>… “after a few drinks, or whatever…”

    Ha!-Ha! Your “or whatever” literally made me laugh out loud.
    See ya on the 15th, Debbie.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

    1. Hahaha! Stephen, I think it’s great when people are honest and forthright like that. 😀 Yeah, there was a lot of “whatever” floating around in those days. Not my thing, but the booze was certainly flowing. I could tell you some stories! I’m glad you enjoyed the battle. The next BOTB is on the weekend again, and that makes it difficult for me to participate (clients and hubby keep me busy), but I’ll be back for Dec. 1. Thanks for dropping in. I always enjoy your in-depth comments. Apologies for the late response.

  2. Hi, dear Debbie the Doglady! Congratulations on pulling off another squeaker. I’m shocked. I honestly expected a lopsided victory for Neal Morse. The number of Disco lovers in this circle explains why heavy music doesn’t go over as well. It is gratifying to discover that your ears matched mine and that you even agreed with me that the Neal Morse vocals weren’t as great as the instrumental arrangement. There are a few Donna Summer recordings that I like more than the ones posted. They include “Dim All the Lights,” “No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)” with Barbra Streisand, and “On the Radio.”

    Thanks for another great band battle, dear friend Debbie!

    1. Hi, Shady; I had a hunch this would be a close one. So many people love disco and Donna Summer. Prog rock is less mainstream. 🙂

      Your Donna picks aren’t bad; especially the duet with Barbra. My overall favourite song of hers is HOT STUFF (click title if you want to listen to it.)

      Glad you enjoyed the battle! Here’s Donna, with Barbra: Have a good weekend.

  3. I think besides country, rap, and metal there is no music much more divisive than disco and prog rock. These Battle fothe Bands post surely bear that out. I know I’ve had my share where the commenters went in far flung regions from on another. Personal taste is such a great mystery much of the time.

    I thought both these versions were outstanding to my ears and I’d pick either as a winner. Considering the close outcome of your contest I’m still a winner because Morse’s version was excellent. And though I didn’t pick Summers’ version, I still liked it a great deal.

    This was a very good Battle of the Bands match.

    Arlee Bird
    Wrote By Rote

    1. I think you’re right about the divisive genres, Lee. That said, who wants bland all the time, yes? Stirring things up keeps these battles interesting. 🙂 Unlike you, I found the disco version distasteful, except for the intro. LOL Yup; personal taste is a mystery. Glad you enjoyed the battle. Have a good weekend!