That song, “Rock and Roll”, is actually pretty un-rocking by any post-1965 standard, which brings us to the issue of what exactly type of tune this tournament is seeking to crown. Many of the most “rocking” songs have long passed by the wayside, but we cast our net perhaps too narrowly to claim that the tournament is determining “the best song of all time.” What we’ve generally stuck with is the idea of the pantheon, the great friends of rock genre. The pantheon will be represented in the semi-finals by two legendary songs.
#7 Ring of Fire (Johnny Cash) def. #2 Son of a Preacherman (Dusty Springfield), 211.1-210.95.
I had to completely re-write my post for this stunner. Yes, SOAP was showing serious chinks in the armor, but once it re-took the lead from Ring of Fire this morning, I thought it was over. Indeed, if you track the scores, SOAP built a steady lead throughout the day. By the late afternoon the lead had shrunk to about six, with most votes already in. Then the last four voters, none of whom were voting together, cast a net +9 for the Man in Black, the toughest Cinderella story I’ve ever met. He makes the Wall of 10s, backed by Meghan, Jacob and Astrid.
My hats off to Dusty, one of the great stars of the tournament. She makes the Walls of 10s one last time thanks to Aiko, Kate M. and Catholic. From play-in afterthought to championship contender, Son of a Preacherman knocked out a series of heavyweights, and had a real shot at going all the way. Hopefully someone can nominate a strong Dusty Springfield song for the People’s Choice Tournament this summer. Guillermo, now might be a good time for your Son of a Preacherman story.
For the record, of the 28 votes recorded, 14 went for Dusty, 13 for Cash, with one tie (mine).
Wow, another epic battle. King actually led this one for almost the entire 48 hours, but The Weight refused to go away. As a testament to how much people liked both these songs, only three voters gave them more than a 3-point spread (14 people voted for King, 13 for the Band, with one tie). The Weight posted the third highest average of the quarter-finals, and the fourth-highest score of the tournament. Jacob and Natalie sent it to the Wall of 10s. It just wasn’t enough.
Perhaps the most glowing testament to Stand By Me’s success is that it did not make the Wall of 10s. No boosters can be blamed for this- it picked up at least a “9” from 11 different voters. In doing so, it racked up the 3rd highest point total of the tournament, and second highest average of the quarter-finals. Unfortunately, there’s a song that has claim to #1 in both categories waiting across the bay named Bohemian Rhapsody.
On a final note to wrap up the day, it was fascinating to see the voting base essentially divide down partisan lines- one half for Son of a Preacherman and Stand By Me, one half for Ring of Fire and The Weight. So before anyone gets too disappointed, let’s just all call ourselves winners tonight.
Back to Guillermo for the semi-finals. New Yorkers- I’ll see you at my place on Saturday night as we vote to crown a champion. To everyone else, I’ll see you on the world wide web.