Hello, good folks! Did we all survive last Sunday's Daylight Savings Time? I have to say it's been a great week full of lots of work, lots of thrifting (which means lots of vintage treasures, yay!), warmer temps, and binge-watching Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, which you should totally be watching if you're a Netflix subscriber! It's also time for another Battle of the Bands, and I am pretty excited about this one!
So, first things first: on the 1st and 15th of every month, a group of bloggers (including myself) present different versions of the same song for our readers to listen to, and then vote for their favorite (or least disliked, because there *have* been some of those!). On the 7th and 21st, I will come back, place my own vote, add 'em up, and announce the winner. Would you like to participate? Just head over to the link, listen and vote on Stephen T. McC's current battle, and let him know in the comments you'd like to participate. Easy-peasy!
Last week, I presented two wildly different versions of "House of the Rising Sun" (Leadbelly won over Muse). For this battle, I am using two versions of the same song, very similar in many ways (structure, composition, length, and both were recorded live), but, to my ears at least, they each have a very different sound distinct to the artists showcased. Another note about this battle: the songs are both LONG. I do not expect anyone to listen to them both all the way through (though I do highly recommend it, as they are both great and worthy of a listen), but if you will listen to the first two verses or so, you should get a pretty good feel for each version! That song is "Iko Iko". Recorded by many, made famous by a few, and according to the verdicts of several legal battles, belongs to The Dixie Cups (with James Crawford,this time according to Wikipedia, being credited 25% for public performances). The Dixie Cups version with the drumsticks is perhaps one of the most unique songs I've ever heard, and it stuck with me.
First up is the iconic, ultimate jam band Grateful Dead with a steady-rollin' rendition done as only they can! If you listen to at least the 3:45 mark, you'll hear a pretty awesome keyboard solo from Brent Mydland, which, in my opinion, takes the song to a whole other level. Can you imagine this coming through their Wall of Sound? I do recommend being careful while you watch, though, because it is impossible to un-see a 1980s-era Bob Weir clad in short, short, shorty-shorts:
Or perhaps a genuine N'Awlins-flavored jazzy, funky, upbeat version by the one and only Dr. John (featuring some amazing backing musicians) will be more to your liking? Again, about 3-3.5 minutes will be a good amount to listen to for the purposes of this post. This is a largely instrumental version after the 4:00 mark, but if you keep listening you get a sax solo starting at about the 4:00 mark, followed at around the 5:00 mark by brief baritone sax, trumpet, and guitar solos. This version also features Dr. John's impressive piano talents, of course.