Sunday, March 15, 2015

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Wonderful World”

Feels like we just finished the last one and already we’re doing a new one. Time sure flies when you’re having fun, doesn’t it?

We’re reaching back in the vault to 1960 for this gem by the great Sam Cooke, “Wonderful World.” It reached #12 on the Hot 100 and #2 on the R&B charts that year. As always, this is presented for comparison purposes only, and not part of the competition.

A great song, to be sure, and one that’s been covered a few times, two of whom will be competing today.

CONTESTANT #1: Herman’s Hermits

As was the case with so many bands in the British Invasion, Herman’s Hermits covered a lot of American rock and rhythm & blues that they learned by listening to the records and turning out copies that were as good, if not better, than the originals. Their version of “Wonderful World” was released in April 1965 and reached #4 on the Hot 100, as well as #7 in their own country. It’s pretty faithful to the original, but a little faster and more upbeat.

CONTESTANT #2: Art Garfunkel featuring Paul Simon and James Taylor

Art Garfunkel recorded the song in 1978 backed by his old buddy Paul Simon and James Taylor. Rather than try and reproduce the Sam Cooke original, Art sang it as a ballad. It reached #17 on both the Hot 100 and Easy Listening charts that year.

So now, it’s time to vote. Which of these two versions did you like better? Is it the rocking Herman’s Hermits version, or the slower, harmonized, ballad-style Art Garfunkel one? Whichever you prefer is fine with me, but you have to tell me what it is to have your vote count. And no write-in votes for Sam Cooke will be accepted, although I’m sure you’ll tell me whether you found it preferable to either of the other versions when you cast your vote.

And, after you vote, be sure and check out the other battles going on today:

Tossing It Out

Far Away Series

StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands

Your Daily Dose

Mike’s Ramblings

Curious as a Cathy

DC Relief – Battle of the Bands

This Belle Rocks

Book Lover

Alex J. Cavanaugh will be doing his tomorrow.

Lines are open now! Results of this battle one week from today!

from The Sound of One Hand Typing

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