Saturday, November 14, 2015

Battle of the Bands: "Goodnight, Saigon"


WELCOME TO THE BATTLE OF THE BANDS!!!


Our battles take place twice a month: on the 1st and 15th.

 The results come six days later: on the 7th and 21st. That's 
when I return, total all of the votes, including mine 
(if necessary), and announce the winner. 

This music blogging event first introduced by our friends 
and I'd like to give them a heartfelt "thank you":

Fae @ Far Away Eyes 
Stephen T. McCarthy presents... 



In 1982, Billy Joel released the song "Goodnight, Saigon" on the album The Nylon Curtain. The theme was the Viet Nam war and this song always grabbed my heart as Joel sang of this band of Marines who "dug in deep and shot on sight" and said "we'd all go down together." 

When I saw this done in concert, I was moved to tears by a large band of veterans who stood together and sang the chorus, swaying to the rhythm of the song and shedding a few tears of their own. Powerful stuff; I don't care if he performed it a zillion times. 

Al Penwasser, this BOTB is dedicated to you. You inspire some of my posts, too.



THE ORIGINAL:
Goodnight, Saigon by Billy Joel





CONTENDER #1:
Garth Brooks
(Kennedy Center Honors for Billy Joel)

Dang it, now I'm tearing up again. 




CONTENDER #3: Joan Baez


Listening to this, it initially seemed like it wasn't a 
great contender. It grew on me. 



It's your turn now. Listen and vote for your favorite.
I'll tally them up and return on the 21st to give you a tally and 
announce the winner who will then forever bask in Flipside glory. 
Now, don't you want to be part of that? Get votin'. 

Don't forget to visit the peeps (many of which do much, much better at BOTB):

YOUR DAILY DOSE




Say a prayer for all those hurting in Paris and Beruit.


69 comments:

  1. I like Joan's voice on a lot of songs, Not so thrilled about it on this song, but I can see how this might grow on me too. The musical arrangement is very nice--the piano is lovely. Joan's voice takes the song to almost art song proportions. Right now this version is simmering, but not quite there for me.

    Billy Joel's version is still the best but since he's apparently not a choice and I like Garth Brooks then that version grabs me the most at first listening. But wait...

    Had to go back to Joan. Since this is about music, I hear the most music in her version and I think this version could hold my fascination for the longer team.

    Okay, I concede--my vote goes to Joan Baez.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. See what I mean? At first, you say "nawwww" and then you listen a little bit more...

      I like the fact that these individuals probably aren't cut from the same cloth, too, politically. Sometimes, it's hard to separate the person from their music.

      Thanks, Arlee!

      A VOTE FOR JOAN!

      Delete
  2. Being a Billy Joel-hater, I wasn't familiar with this song. But I had to give this Battle a lot of thought... for the length of time it took me to read the names "Garth Brooks" and "Joan Baez".

    I don't hate Garth like I do Billy, but... Garth has never really done much for me. (I asked him to loan me $20.00 once, and he refused. And that's the MOST he's ever done for me!) I like my Country "Western" and I like my Country "Outlaw", but I'm not really crazy about my Country "Rock", such as Garth delivers.

    However... Joan is a "warbler". (Warbler: A type of songbird that gets on my nerves with its shrill cheeping and peeping. I always wanna feed it a worm to shut it up.)

    So, I'll loan my vote to Big Bad Brooks (which is more than he ever loaned me!)

    ~ D-FensDogG
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That doesn't surprise me - or insult me. I mix it up just to get diverse opinions!

      One of my early albums was Billy Joel's "57th Street" and I loved it. With successive albums, I liked a lot of his stuff less. Then I saw him in concert and thought "Wow, I think I'm back on the Billy train again."

      I also LOVE folksy acoustic music. Joan is the queen of that. But she does do the warbler stuff. A unique voice, for sure. Buffy St. Marie did a bit of that, too.

      Garth gave the $20 to me and said to hold it till you asked again.

      A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks, D-D-D-FensDogG!

      Delete
  3. Cherdo - thanks. Now I'm a puddle of tears. Billy Joel does it well, but having watched the Kennedy Honors six times with Garth...I can no longer be objective. I know it's one heck of a song - those lyrics are more haunting today!

    > >... "Say a prayer for all those hurting in Paris and Beruit" Will Do!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What is it that makes me like these songs that just yank on your heart? Must be a chick thing. But I do like them! I figure if a person can write a song that gets to me, kudos to them.

      Thanks, Dixie!

      A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Delete
  4. I think STMC captured my thoughts on this too. Vote to Brooks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He's good at that (among other things). Thanks, CWM!

      A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Delete
  5. Garth gets my vote, liked him more right off the bat

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A VOTE FOR GARTH!
      And home! And hearth!

      Delete
  6. I thought this would be a no brainer because Garth's voice would be more appropriate for the song. But no, I couldn't understand the words. I've loved Joan Baez for many years. She gets my vote here. I think of all the days she spent telling young men they didn't have to go, and all the times the police hauled her off to jail. I'm not saying soldiers shouldn't perform their duties, but I still think Joan's stance was brave.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So did you vote for Joan because you love her or her song was better ?
      Just being nosy.
      I have people I don't like Ton Cruise for one, where I will not go to one of his movies
      becuse he ruins it for me.

      Delete
    2. The song was better. I'm not a Garth Brooks fan, but if I thought he sang it better, he'd get my vote.

      Delete
    3. Gayle, I'm like you - there are certain celebrities that just rub me the wrong way.

      Janie: I always thought she was genuine. Even if I don't agree, I admire "genuine."

      A VOTE FOR JOAN!

      Delete
    4. (actually, let me re-phrase..."don't agree" is meant in a general sense. I do love a person who is genuinely passionate about their cause if it is not meant to harm or hurt others).

      Delete
  7. IA most interesting choice, my friend.

    I've like Billy Joel since I first heard 'Piano Man', still do. BUT, I'm too old to like this song. I've witnessed classmates, friends, lovers, and family 'come home in plastic as numbered corpse', from this dirty little war. As the world yet again, claws it's way into madness (I had friends in Paris this past week, also) there are too many nightmares creeping around here.

    I like Garth Brooks, despite the fact that I believe he is the man who ruined country music, and his version here is powerful. No matter what anyone says about him, the guy is a master showman.

    I've never been crazy about Joan, and yet it is somehow fitting that she would cover this tune.

    OK, the vote. Give mine to Garth. Now I'm going to go and try to forget all about his. Yeah, that's gonna happen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FAE, I like Billy Joel, too, and I don't think he meant to give a big high five to conflicts and I certainly can understand your aversion to this song.

      For me, music has always been so powerful and I think it is a skill when an artist can make his audience have strong emotional responses because they connect to the subject. That is certainly true of this song and it just kind of sneaks up on me around Veteran's Day, you know?

      So, dearie - A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks and hugs.

      Delete
  8. All good, but still Billy Joel hands down. Rarely have I heard a more haunting, poignant song (and that includes Disco Duck...oh my, I just HAD to ruin a serious comment with one of my usual pieces of snark...sorry).
    Thanks for the mention!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a pretty powerful performance, in my book. Your comments on "war" inspired this one.

      But you can't vote for Billy in this THANG, he is the original - ya gotta throw the contenders a vote.

      Delete
  9. Joan? My favorite of hers continues to be "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen - and I love when Levon Helm sang it with The Band. Great, great song.

      Delete
  10. Why didn't I combine my comments into one? I wanted you to be happy when you saw how many comments there were!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bwahahahahahahaaaaaaa!!! I'll give you brownie points for good intentions, brother. Thanks!

      Delete
  11. Replies
    1. You know what I'm thinking: IMP. Yep, that's you. Maybe a leprachaun.

      Delete
    2. The FUNNIEST thing? I'm five foot six, so 'imp' and 'leprechaun' are spot on!

      Delete
  12. I love Joan's version but Garth Brooks puts more powerful emotion into the song, which I think it needs given the context. So my vote goes to Garth...

    Michele at Angels Bark

    ReplyDelete
  13. Never hear this song before. But right in the beginning where the song says 'we were so gung ho to lay down our lives' I call BS. "I" don't know ANYBODY that wanted to go to Vietnam. Or anybody that came back that were glad they went. I did hear stories of guys signing up so they could go over there and kill people. They were the ones that signed up for a second tour.

    Vote - Joan.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So agree with what you wrote. I remember driving to class and a sign on the dorm window said Goodbye world #1, That is when we had the draft numbers. I was so upset, that vision has stayed with me all these years.

      Delete
    2. You're allowed to call "it," after all, I'm asking for your opinion, right?

      When I hear that line ("'we were so gung ho to lay down our lives") it just reminds me of a young person that doesn't fully understand the cost of war and I'm guessing he only used that to illustrate a point. But what do I know? Billy Joel won't return my calls. Go figure.

      A VOTE FOR JOAN!!

      Delete
  14. Please chalk me up for Garth. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Thanks, Linda, my buddy!

      Delete
  15. My honey is playing along today, and our collective vote goes to Joan. The Garth Brooks version felt like a carbon copy of the original—which I love, don't get me wrong, but I believe that, unless you're a wedding singer, a cover should have something new, something fresh. Joan's arrangement was very similar to Billy Joel's, too, but her voice made all the difference. Very, very cool version, which I'd never heard before.

    Excellent battle, Cherdo!
    Guilie @ Quiet Laughter

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Garth's version is very close to Billy Joel's original. Maybe because it was at the Kennedy Center Honors. I've heard GB does it in concert sometimes. Hey, most people think "Shameless" is a Garth song and it was originally a Billy Joel tune. Someone actually argued that point with me like I was a nut. And I was a nut, but not about that particular issue. :-)

      Thanks, Guilie! A VOTE FOR JOAN!

      Delete
  16. I vote for Garth.
    The reason I didn't like Joans is why Stephen didn't the "warbelering" puts my teeth on edge.

    cheers, parsnip

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I haven't heard that saying - "puts my teeth on edge" - for a long time. It made me smile...

      A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks, Gayle! :-)

      Delete
  17. I like Joan Baez but she does sound like a warbler ready to place daisies in the guns of the soldiers which doesn't quite go with the oomph this song needs. I think this is more a soldier's song and Joan was anti-Vietnam so she can't quite put the same intensity that Garth Brooks and the soldiers do. Garth Brooks and the soldiers are standing tall and make the words convincing so I vote Garth all the way

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Isn't that a tear jerker to see all those veterans join in? It was really something to see in concert and nearly all the vets had tears streaming down. Wow.

      Delete
  18. I also agree with Mr. Stephen McCarthy. Don't like Brooks, but can't stand that warbling. Garth gets my vote simply because he isn't singing the song like he's stuck inside of a paint shaker. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha ha ha ha....poor Joan...she's just stuck in the paint shaker. I'm never gonna get that out of my head.

      A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks, guys!

      Delete
  19. I love Garth Brooks. Always have. I had the privilege of seeing him in concert in Columbia, SC, for his Fresh Horses tour. What a fan-frickin-tastic concert that was. I admit I was doubly glad I saw it since it wasn't long after that he traded in his song card for the dad card. And NO ONE puts on a show like Garth Brooks. That man is an Entertainer and a damn fine singer.

    My only complaint about the Garth version is that it's too short. I wanted more of the verses. However, the feeling of the song is the same as I get when I hear Billy Joel sing it. Chillbumps.

    Joan Baez didn't give me chillbumps.

    Garth Brooks it is!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The man has talent! For the most part, I use people I like in battles. Life too short, ya know? Might as well do things I like to do and listen to songs I like to hear.

      Chillbumps is a good way to describe it; I was wrestling with a descriptive word. That is perfect.

      I've never seen GB in concert but I know I would have loved it. Billy Joel was fantastic in concert. I love when a live performance (truly LIVE, not lip-synched) is great!

      A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks, Robin!

      [Do you think I'll ever stop using too many ellipses and exclamation points? I may need a 12 step group for grammar.]

      Delete
  20. I don't normally listen to the original that is not in the voting. But this time as it was Billy Joel, THE Piano Man, and this particular song . . well, you know.

    Joan did a fantastic rendition, no doubt. But this is a man's song to me, as men are the ones who bear the brunt of war (yes I know women are soldiers and they are every bit as dedicated and efficient at it). Garth, had he been allowed to sing the entire song, would have done it as much justice as Billy Joel. Garth can make anyone cry, and believe. Billy Joel was one of his influences, and he learned well about emotive singing. My vote is going to Garth for this battle; but the song belongs to Billy Joel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree whole heartedly that this BELONGS to Billy Joel. I like to find iconic performances and then covers. This was one of the few times I really had to search to find and established artist who had actually covered it. Not many had attempted it!

      A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks, Dolorah!

      Delete
  21. Sorry, still can't hear this song through but got furthest with Joan Baez, perhaps because of the gentleness in her voice --an incredibly kind voice like an angel speaking for the dead, to those who know too many dead people.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a tough song to listen to but that is one of the things I think make it a great piece.

      Joan always seems ultra-feminine and delicate when she sings.

      Knowing even one dead person is too many, don't you think?

      Thanks, Geo.! A VOTE FOR JOAN!

      Delete
  22. Gotta throw my support to Garth. It's a Nashville thing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gotta represent, Stephanie! If only K-ville had more singers.....**sigh**

      A VOTE FOR GARTH! Thanks, Stephanie.

      Delete
  23. Incredible song! I will vote Garth on this one, he brought emotion to the song and did a splendid cover!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you liked it. Even if it's a tough subject (and controversial!), it's a song I love.

      A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Delete
  24. Gotta give it to Garth Brooks on this song. A very touching rendition and what a show stopper.
    Only Billy Joel could have topped Garth's version if you ask me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      I agree with you on this one - only Billy Joel can top it. Thanks!

      Delete
  25. Joan Baez's version seemed... monotone to me? Towards the end, it felt like it was just never ending and blah. As much as an unfan I am of Brooks... well, he gets my vote because at least the song wasn't monotonous.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, sometimes it really is a battle...I've voted in situations where I was really crazy about either - but hey! It's a fun thing. Joan Baez can still have her career, even if we don't vote for her and Garth doesn't need any help from us, either. It's all good, friend.

      A VOTE FOR GARTH...RELUCTANT, BUT SOLID!

      Thank you, Madilyn!

      Delete
  26. I'm going to stick with Billy Joel. This song has a special memory for me. I had the album on cassette and every time it came on, with the chopper sounds, my dad would panic. He'd shut the radio off and say, "Do we have a flat?" I'd say, "No Dad, it's just the song." And he'd say, "Evidently, you don't know what a flat sounds like."

    Every single time. Good times. Good memories.

    Thanks for all the votes in the joust. You're pretty freaking awesome. <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awwwww, that is so sweet...no one ever tells me I'm freaking awesome....ha ha ha.

      The flat story cracked me up. We may have the same Dad...

      Delete
  27. Replies
    1. Yay! Anemone has spoken! A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Thanks, friend.

      Delete
  28. Cherdo, I'm giving my vote to Garth. I really didn't care too much for Joan Baez's vocals. Sorry for the late visit. Life is a bit busy for me at the moment. Have a tunetastic week and thankful holiday. You really do have a lot to be thankful for, don't you? Blessings to you and yours!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Cathy! I do have a lot to be thankful for and I AM! LOL.

      A VOTE FOR GARTH!

      Delete
  29. Don't particularly care for the song, and really didn't like Joan Baez's vocal, so Garth wins by default.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll bet Garth will take it however he can get it. :-)

      Thank you for participating and maybe next time, I'll find one you'll like better. ;-) No harm, no foul

      A RELUCTANT VOTE - BUT A VOTE - for Garth!

      Delete

Thanks for your personal yada, yada, yada,
Love, Cherdo