BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Galway Bay” Results


So the song, or rather songs, were two named “Galway Bay,” one of which was more popular in Ireland (sung by Dolores Keane), the other more popular outside Ireland (sung by Bing Crosby). Here are the results.

Inside Ireland (Dolores): 4
Outside Ireland (Bing): 7

Congratulations to Bing and kudos to Dolores for a beautiful job.

I’m still curious: ignoring the singers for just a second, which “Galway Bay” did you like? They were two different songs.

Anyway, we’ll do this again on August 15.



In today’s battle, I’m going to present you with two different songs with the same name and have you decide which of the two you prefer.

There are two different songs called “Galway Bay,” with one being more popular in Ireland and the other more popular outside it.

CONTESTANT #1: Version more popular in Ireland Also known as “My Own Dear Galway Bay,” it was composed by Frank Fahy, a resident of Kinvara, Co. Galway. The music was composed by Tony Small, although it was originally written to the tune of “Skibbereen”. Here it’s performed by Dolores Keane, whose version is one of the better-known ones.

CONTESTANT #2: Version more popular outside Ireland As I mentioned yesterday, when I included Johnny Cash’s version of it, this was written by Dr. Arthur Colahan in 1947. This is Bing Crosby’s version; he changed some of the lyrics to make it less political.

All right, we have two different songs here with the same name. Which of the two of them do you prefer? Listen to both, decide which you prefer, and vote in the comments along with why you chose that one. Then, head over to Stephen T. McCarthy’s blog, where he has the current list of participants, and vote in the other battles being held today. I’ll count the votes and declare the winner next Saturday, July 22, so have your vote in before then.

The lines are now open. Best of luck to Mr. Fahy and Dr. Colahan, and to Dolores and Bing!

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Big Blue Diamonds” Results


A touch late, but here are the results from “Battle ‘Big Blue Diamonds’: Van Morrison vs. Percy Sledge”:

Van Morrison: 1
Percy Sledge: 9

Congratulations to Percy Sledge, and a pat on the back for Van Morrison.

We won’t be doing a Battle on July 1, on account of it being on Independence Day weekend. It looks like everyone is cutting back to one battle a month, and I haven’t decided whether I’ll do the same or keep doing two battles. I’ll leave it up to you, my readers: Do you like having two battles a month, or would you prefer just one? Let me know in the comments. In any event, the next Battle will be on July 15, when I’ll announce the consensus. See you then!

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Big Blue Diamonds”


A few weeks ago, I did a Monday’s Music Moves Me where I featured songs that have the word “diamond” in the title, and as usual asked if anyone had any others. That Friday, I featured your songs on The Friday Five, one of which was “Big Blue Diamond” by Jerry Lee Lewis, suggested by the lovely Calen. As I said then, a substantial number of covers of this song had been done, and promised that I would do a BotB around it today.

“Big Blue Diamonds” (also called “Big Blue Diamond” and “Blue Diamond”) was written in 1950 by Earl J. (Kit) Carson. The first recording of it was a 78 RPM single by Red Perkins. Here it is, and please note it isn’t in the running; I offer it only for comparison, and because there’s a killer pedal steel guitar solo in the middle.

The Blogger’s Best Friend tells us that, while this was written as a country song, it’s been recorded as an R&B and a rock song. Give a listen to the next two songs and let me know in the comments which you like better.

CONTESTANT #1: Van Morrison From Van’s 2006 album Pay The Devil, where he gave us twelve covers of country tunes.

CONTESTANT #2: Percy Sledge One of the comments on YouTube tells us that Percy recorded this one on his 2004 album Shining Through The Rain.

So, give these two covers a listen and let me know by next Thursday (June 22) which you prefer, and maybe a few words why you prefer it. Then, hie thee over to Stephen T. McCarthy Presents Battle of The Bands, where he has a list (in the right-hand column) of other blogs which might also be having a Battle today, visit them, and make your voice be heard.

The lines are now open. Best of luck to Van and Percy!

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “All Or Nothing At All” Results


This was another of those battles where one of the contestants easily defeats the other, or in this case, the others. To review: the song was “All Or Nothing At All,” and the contestants were Sarah Vaughan, June Christy, and Billie Holiday. The final score:

Sarah Vaughan: 12
June Christy: 1
Billie Holiday: 2

It’s been my experience that any time Sarah Vaughan is in the running, she wins, usually by a significant margin. I think I’ll retire her, like baseball and other sports teams retire the numbers of the significant players in franchise history.

Many thanks to Birgit, whose vote kept June Christy from being shut out entirely.

Anyway, congratulations to Sarah Vaughan and kudos to June Christy and Billie Holiday for a job well done.

Our next Battle of the Bands will be on June 15. See you then!