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Friday, March 14, 2014

Hey Diddle Diddle Let Me Ask You a Riddle

The Riddler ...item 1c.. Booker T & The MG's -...
The Riddler ...item 1c.. Booker T & The MG's - Green Onions (1962) Full Album -- "Behave Yourself" ...item 2.. 'Diamond Dee' who butt heads with lawyers - She sent a message talking about 'jackass lawyers on my ass.' (29 June 2013) ... (Photo credit: marsmet472)

          Do you like riddles or do they tend to annoy you?    I've been playing my little "guess the song" game for several months now.   Prior to a Battle of the Bands post I will often drop clues into my posts about what song I'll be using.   Most readers ignore my game and don't even bother mentioning it.

           In the comments of my most recent clue post my dear blogger friend Stephen T.McCarthy put it this way:
Oh, I have no idea what song you will be using. I've given up trying to guess on that stuffs.
You usually use such obscure songs that I've never even heard of them to begin with. Aside from that, I think you seed your 'Clues Posts' with all kinds of blind alleys and disinfo (i.e., clues meant to make the reader think it's a certain song that it isn't), so guessing what song you will be using is a near impossibility. No one has ever once guessed correctly, so what's the point in trying?
I rarely attempt to figure out what it will be anymore and I just simply wait to see.
          Mr. McCarthy may be expressing the same sentiments that most other readers have felt about my guessing game.  Though actually a few readers in previous Battle clue posts have guessed my songs ahead of time so apparently the guessing is not a "near impossibility".  Most of the songs I've used so far have in fact been fairly well known and by artists who if were not well-known, were artists with a certain historical significance in the history of modern music.  

        Even if a song or an artist is obscure, does this cause you the reader to have no interest and not wish to ever have an interest?  Often I'll see a comment to the effect of "I don't like this style of music" or "I could only listen for a few seconds until I couldn't stand it".  I guess I can empathize with that sentiment in the sense that if someone pitted song versions in the rap genre I might be tempted not to listen to those.  I thought I was putting up some pretty good songs since it's music that I like, but that's a whole different topic that I do plan on addressing in some future post--and not just from the standpoint of music, but all art including books and movies.

Back to the Riddle Topic

       So even knowing that the clues and guessing games are not overly popular features I will continue inserting these into blog posts now and then.  It might be worth noting that the Battle of the Bands posts are not my most popular either--I just like doing them because they're fun and interesting to me.  Part of my reasoning behind the concept of guessing games is that it is a sort of marketing strategy that might encourage readers to want to come back to the Battle of the Bands post to see if they guessed correctly or just to find out what the song is.   I'm still in the testing stage I guess.        

       Riddles, guessing games, and the like are marketing ploys that are often used to get a customer base curious and interested in something that is coming--a new product, movie, television show, etc.   They do require thought.  If answers were easy then an audience might soon lose interest.  That's what I've been experimenting with--marketing, as I so often do.   There is a riddle of sorts even in that sentence, but I won't go there.

        Instead, I'm sticking with the Battle of the Bands post which will appear tomorrow (Saturday March 15th).  I'm going to present a clue in riddle form.  This will be very obvious, but maybe only obvious after you've seen my next Battle of the Bands song pick.  Here is the riddle:

The song was not written by a queen
And the song is not about a king.
It could have been sung by Summer despite its winter theme
Since the setting seems like disco before disco was the thing.

        Part of this clue is very obvious if you think about it.  I'll admit that the song is relatively obscure but you'll find a lot of modern music connections regarding the song related to my contest of the two versions I will present.

            Do you think events like guessing games and riddles are fun?    What obscurities do you like to talk about on your blog?   Can you guess the riddle or any part of it?

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  1. Is it November Rain? Yeah, doubt it. I like riddles and sometimes I try to guess. You are a very entertaining guy Arlee.

  2. Not a clue.
    Riddles are tough. Trivia can get a good response as long as it's not too difficult.

  3. I suspect that this is a song that I have never heard before. If it is pre-disco that means earlier than the 70s. I don't know who Sommer is, so that didn't help me. And it is winter themed... So, it sounds like disco and the theme is winter, but it isn't technically disco. I have no idea.

  4. BOIDMAN ~
    I will admit that I probably shouldn't have said that your BOTB songs are "usually" obscure. I should have said something like "fairly frequently" instead.

    I could go back through your BOTB posts and get a definite number, but I won't spend the time on that. Let's just say that I have a pretty extensive awareness of lots of Popular Music (as you yourself have publicly stated, and I've appreciated). I know a lot about Blues, Jazz, Pop Standards, and Rock - although my knowledge of Rock/Pop ends at about 1984 or '85 (and I realized too late that a career in music is what I SHOULD have pursued).

    All that being said, you have come up with several BOTB songs that I'd never even heard of.

    You say that...
    Though actually a few readers in previous Battle clue posts have guessed my songs ahead of time so apparently the guessing is not a "near impossibility".

    If you say that's true, then it's true. But did you ever admit PRIOR to the BOTB post that someone had guessed correctly? Because I don't recall even one time reading in a Comment Section where you told a commenter that they had correctly guessed the song beforehand.

    You may have done that, and I simply missed it. I confess that I haven't read through all the comments in every Comment Section.

    Anyway, speaking just for me, of course, I don't mind your posts that include clues about the upcoming BOTB song. I actually think it's a cool idea.

    But... knowing that there's a fair chance I have never even heard of the song you are planning to use, it doesn't make much sense to spend much time pondering the post and looking for clues that may or may not lead me to something.

    I have too many other things to think about, like, who am I going to kill next, and where will I hide the body?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  5. I'm not a big fan of riddles. I'm not very good at trivia about music or movies. I might do okay with books.

  6. Sheena-Kay -- Not "November Rain". I hope I'm entertaining--at least in some of my blog posts.

    Alex -- I've never been good at riddles and it takes skill to craft a good one. I think mine today is pretty good, but you'd need to know the song lyrics for the second part of it. The first half is very obvious if you really think about it.

    Robin-- I checked the name after you pointed this out. "Sommer" was the name the artist to whom I referred used early in her career and then she changed it to "Summer". I know a lot of her songs well as I'm sure you do--I don't think she ever recorded the song of the riddle but it would have been a good one for her.

    StMc -- I don't think the BOTB "rules" ever stipulated that the songs had to be well known. And actually I've seen several readers on Battles other than mine say they'd never heard those songs. To me the point of the song contest is not familiarity, but who does the best version. As I said in my previous BOTB post I think the contest is more objective when we don't have a preconceived preference for one particular version.

    I think I did mention in the BOTB post for "Iron Man" that Alex C. guessed correctly. I believe more than one person guessed right on "The Messiah". I might not mention correct guesses because most of the BOTB posts were written ahead of time and I don't feel that it's all that relevant to mention. It's not a contest with a prize and since most readers aren't playing along it seems pointless to bring it up in my post.

    I'm just experimenting with clues and fun stuff. Maybe I'll write a mystery someday. Or maybe the real mystery is why I can't put myself into writing something besides blog posts. But that's another topic for another day.

    Susan GK -- I can be pretty good with guessing about things I know, but the fact is that I don't remember a lot of things and if it's trivia from the past 20 years then I'm often clueless.


  7. So it could have been sung by Donna Summer but was not written by Aretha Franklin (the Queen of Soul). And the song is not about Elvis (who is still the king) or B.B. King, but it sounds like disco.

    "MacArthur Park" comes to mind, but that was in the heart of the disco years and does not apply to the first two clues.

    "Dancing Queen" by Abba also comes to mind, but I think that was in the midst of the disco craze as well.

    And I know it's not Dylan's "Queen Jane Approximately..."

    Out of guesses...


  8. I'm not a fan of riddles and clues. I'm a real get to the point person. Like don't ever tell me a long story joke b/c I will totally tune out. I like 'what do you call a....? A ....' type jokes. Observational humour. But god please don't start out with 'The farmer had 3 daughters. One day....' zzzzzZZZZzzzzzZZZZZZ I do have to agree with your commenter that the music you choose is pretty obscure.

    However, based on the clue I'm gonna go with MacArthur Park?

  9. Never been any good at riddles and since I don't know any of the music you feature it wouldn't be much use my trying. You may like it, not heard anything that appeals to me Lee. Each to their own.

  10. The only thing I can think of is Winter Melody by Donna Summer. But, honestly, I don't know if it fits. There's my guess, though.

  11. Lee-

    I am going to stick with my first guess from my earlier comment-MacArthur Park.

    If memory serves me, Jimmy Webb wrote that before Donna Summer made it a hit, and I figure you've rooted out the original version.


  12. Larry -- You are definitely headed in the right direction in deciphering the clues. Good guesses but not right.

    JoJo -- It usually depends on the delivery of a long story jokes. Most people don't do them well, but if the story is told well then I'm okay with a long joke.

    Jo -- I'll be doing a "to each their own" post eventually. That topic has been hanging around in my topic folder for a long time.

    Jennifer -- Good guess, but not right.

    Larry -- Jimmy Webb was a pretty major songwriter, but he's not involved in the song in any way that I know and the song is not "MacArthur Park".


  13. Whelp, DC took my guess and it was wrong. Easy come, easy go!

  14. LEE ~
    I never said that using obscure songs was breaking any BOTB "rules"!

    Heck, I myself have used a few obscure tunes. (Like my current BOTB installment. I doubt too many readers will have previously heard 'Canadian Sunset'.)

    I was merely pointing out that you sometimes use obscure songs, so trying to guess the title of a song that I may have NEVER EVEN HEARD OF BEFORE seems like an exercise in futility.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  15. Never heard of Canadian Sunset? It was very popular in England years ago and I am sure it was popular here in Canada. Don't know about the US.

  16. CW -- "MacArthur Park" is a pretty cool song though.

    StMc --I know what you're saying and if the clues don't click then game is maybe not for you. I do the thing just in case something goes off in someone's head "Hey, I think I know this song!" You may find one of my clues yet that you can identify right off and then you can feel better about the guessing game. But yeah, when you don't know the song it's like asking me sports trivia questions.

    Jo --Yes, "Canadian Sunset" was a standard back in my younger days. Lot's of artists covered it and it was a favorite song of mine. I don't hear it played often anymore if at all so the song might be totally new to younger listeners.



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