If you've dropped in for the Question of the Month you'll find that toward the bottom of this post. But before you go there I hope you'll enjoy my first Battle of the Bands entry for November.
Battle of the Bands!!!
This is not at all complicated: Listen to the song versions presented below and then in the comments vote for your favorite and tell us why you liked it. Then visit the links listed near the bottom of this post for more Battles to vote on.
"If You Have Ghosts"
To celebrate Halloween and The Day of the Dead, the song I've chosen for this round of Battle is "If You Have Ghosts" by Roky Erickson. I've written about Roky Erickson and his group the Thirteenth Elevators on my blog before. You can find a couple of posts here and here. Also I discuss some of the allusions referred to in this song in my most recent blog post at Wrote By Rote.
Erickson has written a great deal of music inspired by the supernatural, science fiction, and the spiritual. His music is often a bit rough around the edges with peculiar lyrics, but he's also been diagnosed as being afflicted with paranoid schizophrenia and was institutionalized for a period for that affliction. For more about Roky I highly recommend the documentary You're Gonna Miss Me which discusses his life with mental illness and his journey to cope with it as he eventually returns to recording and performing with the help of his brother.
Roky has recorded "If You Have Ghosts" more than once, but here is his 1981 recording of the song with his group The Aliens. I offer the video for reference only! PLEASE DON'T VOTE ON THIS VERSION! Scroll down if you'd just prefer to hear the two versions offered for voting purposes.
And now for the actual contestants in this round of Battle of the Bands:
John Wesley Harding "If You Have Ghosts" (1990)
Wesley Stace is not only a renowned novelist, reviewer, university professor, and show producer, but also a rock star who records under the name "John Wesley Harding", a name taken from Bob Dylan's album of the same title. As a musician, Harding has released over 20 albums and continues to tour performing his music.
This version of "If You Have Ghosts" appeared on the Roky Erickson tribute album Where the Pyramid Meets the Eye. If you're not familiar with this album I highly recommend it--great recordings of Erickson's music by some outstanding music artists.
Ghost "If You Have Ghosts" (2013)
Originally known as Ghost BC, the heavy metal group Ghost hails from Sweden. Similar to groups such as Kiss, Ghost takes the stage in garish costumes and make-up with highly theatrical performances. Their version of "If You Have Ghosts" appears on their EP If You Have Ghost which was produced by Dave Grohl of the groups Nirvana and the Foo Fighters. Don't let the "heavy metal" label turn you off as I'd consider this recording to be more pop rock than anything. Tell us what you think.
Time to Vote!
Don't be scared to vote on this Battle. I hope you'll add your vote to this contest. Which song version do you like the best? Judge what you hear in the above videos. Which version do you prefer? It's up to you to help determine the winner.
Please vote on your favorite by letting us know your choice in the comment section and tell us why you prefer the version you chose. Then after you've finished here, please visit the other blogs listed below who may or may not be participating this time around. And if you've put up your own BOTB contest let us know that as well so we can vote on yours
Here are some other places where you might find BOTB posts:
‘FAR AWAY SERIES’
StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands
‘YOUR DAILY DOSE’
'Curious as a Cathy'
Sound of One Hand Typing
DC Relief Battle of the Bands
The Doglady's Den
Cherdo on the Flipside
Jingle, Jangle, Jungle
Women: We Shall Overcome
J. A. Scott
Holli's Hoots and Hollers
Results on Friday November 6th
The winner of this Battle will be announced on Friday November 6th. Then starting on Monday November 9th I'll begin an epic week leading into my next Battle of the Bands on November 15th. But more about that later.
The Question of the Month is hosted by Michael G D'Agostino from A Life Examined. The first Monday of each month I'll be answering a question posed by Michael prior to event day. Click on the link to his blog for more participants.
Here is the question for November:
Are you an introvert or an extrovert?
In reality I am definitely an introvert who tries to come across as an extrovert. Left to my natural inclinations among a group of people I don't know and have no stake in winning over, I get in my introvert cocoon to stay as inconspicuous as I can. In other cases I might appear to be as extroverted as all get out as I make my rounds to meet people.
All in all I'm pretty content to be home alone or with only those close to me.
I suppose many of the ghosts lurking in my memories have to do with opportunities lost due to my naturally introverted nature. Perhaps had I been bolder in my ways in my younger years, my circumstances might had turned out far different than they did. On the other hand, I have had a good life so maybe it's best that things turned out the way they did because of the way I was.