This Is Me--2019 A to Z Theme

The Challenge of 2019 was the 10th! Since this was kind of a milestone year for A to Z my theme was a retrospective of sorts, looking at my 10 years as a blogger as well as ruminations about my life as it is and as I hope it yet can be. I've got places to be and people to see along the way. Hope you'll join me for this part of my journey...

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog.

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Saturday, February 1, 2020

First Love ( #BOTB )


If February is the month of love then the First of February might be considered the day of First Love.  Who or what was your first love?  


Photo credit

February: Month of Love

         February represents a number of things to different people, but Valentine's Day is kind of the real stand-out day for most of us.  This being the case, my Battle of the Bands entries for the month will be songs about love.  So many songs to choose from on a topic that so many songs celebrate.  What better place to start than a song about first love.

         For this first "Love" round I've chosen a song called "First Girl (or Boy) I Loved".   Typically I would avoid using a first version as done by the original artist, but in this case that artist is so obscure (as is the song) that this first version wouldn't have much advantage on the voting (other than a certain strangeness to the sound of it).

         The first time I heard this song was in early 1969 after my mother got the Judy Collins album Who Knows Where the Time Goes from the record club to which she belonged.  I immediately took an interest in this album since it included the song "Someday Soon" which had been receiving a lot of airplay at the time.  There are some outstanding songs on this album, but initially I was perplexed by the Collins recording of "First Boy I Loved"--it had an oddly unique quality to it.  But as I listened to it more, the song took hold of me and I began to like it a great deal.

         It would be over forty years later that I would hear the original version by The Incredible String Band (ISB) and I understood why the song had such a unique sound.  After all, ISB has been one of my favorite groups since I first happened upon them in 1970.  I had been initially baffled by their style and the sound of their songs, but me being drawn to weirdness as I am, I soon took a great liking to their music and began accumulating any album by them that I could find.  The early album that contained "First Girl I Loved" was one that I never ran across back then, therefore missed hearing until I finally bought the album for my CD collection sometime in this current century.

         In my Battle I'm going to start out with the more alien sounding version by ISB and then will offer the version by Judy Collins.  I think I can predict how this Battle will go--likely very lopsided--but then I never really know how these things will turn out.  So now it will be up to you to decide on the winner...


Battle of the Bands


        Battle of the Bands is the blogging event started by Far Away Series and now hosted by StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands.   This event happens each month on the 15th and on some there is also a Battle on the 1st of the month.  My blog is one of those with a second Battle excepting over these summer months.   The premise is simple:  Listen to the songs 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 Battle action.


Incredible String Band   "First Girl I Loved"  (1967)






Judy Collins   "First Boy I Loved"   (1968)






Time to Vote!

         I hope you loved--or at least kind of liked--the song I chose for this Battle.  I like both versions, but I'm going to pick one as a favorite.  I hope you'll play along with us.   Which song version do you prefer?   Hopefully you have an opinion of some kind.  You don't have to know about music to have an opinion since it all comes down to your own personal taste.

        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:

 StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands

 ‘Storms and Stardust’ 

  'MIKE'S RAMBLINGS'

'Curious as a Cathy'

Sound of One Hand Typing

The Doglady's Den 

Angel's Bark  

Jingle, Jangle, Jungle 


Cherdo on the Flipside 

A I Love Music


Winner of this Battle Announced on Monday February 10th

         There will be another post on Wednesday February 5th for the Insecure Writer's Support Group, but voting on this BOTB post will be open until Saturday February 8th.  Please vote!!


        




41 comments:

  1. LEE ~

    I have never heard this song before, by anyone. And although I have heard OF The Incredible String Band, I'm not sure I have ever actually heard any of their recordings. (I probably have, but just don't remember.) I do know, however, that the singer is very obviously attempting to sound "Dylanesque". In a couple of places, he even sounded like he was specifically trying to do a vocal impersonation of Bobby Zimmerman.

    It looks like mine is going to be the first of many votes cast for JUDY COLLINS. I don't care for the song, but she does have a nice, clear voice.

    I think it's time to remove the link to 'Your Daily Dose' (Robin hasn't done a BOTB installment in over two years) and replace it with a link to Kim's blog, since she has now rejoined us.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    STMcC Presents BATTLE OF THE BANDS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. STMcC, as I said above this is a very obscure song. There are a few other covers, but it's either a forgettable song for many or one that draws people like me into the music. ISB is pretty much like that I think. They are part of a sub-genre of psychedelic folk/roots music that takes some willingness to invest time in the music. As for the Dylanesque vocal quality I'm not sure that it was intend, but more from their natural accents and narrative musical style.

      Listen to the song a few times and it might grow on you like it did me--but it took a while.

      First vote goes to Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  2. I didn't really care for either of these. Of the two, I'm going with the Incredible String Band, for two reasons:

    1. It's shorter.
    2. Judy Collins's voice annoys me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John H., it's a tough song to get into. I like it now.

      You've assured me of avoided a dreaded shut-out with your vote for...

      ISB.

      Lee

      Delete
  3. Lee,

    Did you get a short, interrupted comment by chance? If so, disregard it. I don't know what went wrong. Anyhow, I love your theme idea for the month of love.

    The Incredible String Band wasn't all the incredible imo. Actually both songs did very little for me but I reckon I preferred Judy Collins in this round even though her song is quite bit longer than ISB's song. I like Judy's vocals and the song's melody suited my ears better.

    My first love...while he wasn't my true love, was my first serious boyfriend if you can call it that at the age of 13. We courted for more than a year. He asked me to marry him and I was certain that's where I'd go but his colors showed through in the end as a two-time cheater which I'm very glad that he did. This saved me a greater heartache later in life. Angered by his deception, I broke it off with him. After he graduated from high school he married that girl. Unfortunately, their relationship didn't last long. If it weren't for our breakup, then I would've missed the opportunity to cross paths with my true love, DH. I believe this was God's hand in action. He was preparing both of us to unite at the right instance. :)

    Thanks for stopping in earlier today to vote in my Piece of My Heart #BoTB showdown 3rd round!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cathy, no, didn't get any other comment.

      ISB takes some active appreciation. They're now one of my favorite bands, but not at first.

      It's great when we find that true love that lasts. Sometimes in youth it's difficult to understand.

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
    2. Lee,

      I meant to go to YT to sample more of ISB mewsic but failed to do that, so I'm now listening to a playlist. They are definitely gifted mewsicians but their vocals seem a bit disconnected somehow. Maybe it's just me. I'll continue to let their top tracks play through to see if my opinion changes any. :)

      Delete
    3. The songs and singing are more related to folk and traditional music than pop styles. Initially when I heard my first taste of their music back in 1970 I was taken aback and didn't care for it, but they've grown on me. Their forays into psychedelia also appealed to me and that won me over. They are definitely an acquired taste for most.

      Lee

      Delete
  4. ahhh... First Loves. I met mine in 1985. We didnt' date until 1988. We dated for the better part of 10 years after that. Then something happened and I left the state for 20 years. Now that I am back in the state and coincidentally only a few miles from his parents home, we are back together. It really is a true love story.

    I love your theme! In fact, I'm doing a Love Songs from the 70s theme all month over at my place.

    I don't know that I have ever heard this song before. While, the Incredible String Band was interesting, it was Judy Collins version that won me over.

    ~Mary
    Jingle Jangle Jungle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary B, sounds like a pretty nice love story to me.

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  5. Very different songs. I'm going with the first one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alex, both are the same song with very different versions.

      A vote for ISB.

      Lee

      Delete
  6. Replies
    1. Susan K, direct and to the point...

      a vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  7. Put me on the Collins train. The "Dylanesque" was a bit heavy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CW, choo-choo!

      on track with another vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  8. The Incredible String Band is quite incredible... but not in a good way. I have a super-broad range of musical interests, but this sound lands farther from the mark (any mark) than an Iranian missile.

    I've never been a Judy Collins fan either, but at least it hits within the range of normalcy. In spite of her dreaded "slow vibrato" technique that I hate. A vote for Judy baby.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 6-Gun, ISB is incredible after you become more acclimated to their musical style. I think they did some rather incredible songs as well. But as always, it's a matter of taste.

      A reluctant vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  9. I never heard of this song and not sure I would listen to it again but I am going with Judy Collins because of her strong and beautiful voice

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Birgit, well, I warned everyone that this is an obscure song. I've listened to it many times since my first puzzled hearing and now I do like it quite well.

      Another vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  10. This is a totally new-to-me song, and while I love the folksy instrumentation of ISB's version, Judy and her ethereal voice and wistful sound get my vote.

    Kim

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kim, I've always gotten a kick out of introducing new music to others--and often the music can be rather out of the mainstream of musical tastes.

      Again it's Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  11. I like ISB but prefer Judy Collins singing in this instance. She sneaks ahead for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Roland, did you ever see ISB? I seem to recall that you were perhaps from their neck of the woods.

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  12. First love was circa 1968/69, during my time at a Swiss boarding school. He was British. I wrote about it a few years ago for the A to Z Challenge. As for your battle,the song is not familiar but I prefer Judy Collins' vocals.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Debbie D, I don't guess I ever knew anyone who was British until I was an adult, though I did have a friend in elementary school who was from Ireland. I liked his accent.

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  13. Okay, I know I'm the weirdo in this group (or at least the top three) but I don't prefer Judy. For some reason, I've never been a fan.

    But the INCREDIBLE STRING BAND? Oh, yeah! I like that version. It's interesting.

    This reminds me of art critiques...who can say why one thing speaks to you and something else fall flat? Maybe I shouldn't critique for the huddled masses, lol.

    Love ya, Lee!
    Cherdo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cherdo, opinions might be influenced by others, but in the end they are very personal and that's the way it should be. How dull if we all liked the same things.

      A vote for ISB.

      Lee

      Delete
  14. Judy gets my vote, vocals were better. Happy Valentine's Month!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yolanda, Happy Valentine's Month to you as well!

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  15. Judy Collins is who I am voting for, Lee. However, now I feel I must go delve into the lovable train wreck that was Incredible String Band. They really were fun, especially when all of them were singing.

    Judy Collins

    ReplyDelete
  16. Michael, you should check out more ISB. This "train wreck" can get pretty wild and amazing at times.

    A vote for Judy Collins.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did, and will some more. Very enjoyable band.

      Delete
  17. Feb. most certainly a time for love.
    My vote goes to Judy Collins.

    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yvonne, but it can get so cold in February!

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  18. Judy, Judy, Judy. And I agree with another commenter that the other singer sounded sort of like Dylan...my guy in the '60's...but not enough for me to pick him. I've never heard of this song, but maybe I did and don't remember it because there's no melody that I can remember and sing to. I'm more into melodies than lyrics, unless they're Dylan's.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Em, you probably have never heard of this song, but it might be an easy one to miss if you weren't paying close attention.

      A vote for Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete
  19. There was a song, long ago, that I liked by Judy Collins, but this isn't it ;-)
    I could do without the "Dylan" voice, but I really liked the guitar in the ISB version. A vote for them please.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diedre, Judy did a number of pretty good songs over the years.

      A guitar vote for ISB..

      Lee

      Delete
  20. Judy gets my vote. I liked her voice better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mike, a vote for the voice of...

      Judy Collins.

      Lee

      Delete

Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee