Memorial Music Tournament: Semi-finals!

RESULTS: “Stand by Me” def. “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, 104.4-98.4. The other semi-final is too close to call! We’re reviewing right now. UPDATE: While “Under Pressure prevailed 109.8-109.7 over “Romeo and Juliet”, we’re declaring it a tie – see more in the Finals post!

Welcome to the Final Four! I don’t think many people would have filled out their ballots with this quartet, but now they each have their own path to victory.

RnJ

A love-struck Romeo, 80s-style

“Smells Like Teen Spirit”, a nostalgic favorite for people of a certain age (many of Gmo’s friends and fam), lost in the fourth round of the Living the Dream tourney and the finals of the Best Opening Track tourney, and comes into the semis with a record of 11-2. Fwiw, this song also won a 256-song personal tourney I did freshman year after downloading thousands of songs on Napster, though I voted the other way in the quarters.

“Stand by Me” won the Living the Dream tournament in literally the same fashion it’s winning here. Let’s face it, no one really *dislikes* this anthem, and it survives round after round by racking up solid scores from some and great scores from others. But here we are. “Stand by Me” comes into a semis with a 13-0 tournament record.

I knew Guillermo nominated “Romeo and Juliet” to the Peoples’ Choice Tourney, where participants had up to three noms depending on past voter engagement.  I forgot what a good run it had – putting up big scores before suffering a shocking upset, 221.25-220.9 (yes, you’re reading that right) at the hands of “Midnight Train to Georgia”. Less noteworthy is that the Killers’ cover of “Romeo and Juliet”, which got pulverized in the Best Covers Tourney. “R & J” rolls into the semis here with the high score in the quarter-finals, and 9-1 tournament record.

Last but not least, those Killer Queens. Here’s a stat – they come into tonight with a staggering 26-4 tournament record from nominations “Under Pressure” (lost to “Stand By Me” in Living the Dream Tourney), “Somebody to Love” live in Montreal (won Peoples Choice), “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Killer Queen” and “Radio Gaga”. No one wants to face off against Freddie Mercury in a tournament, much less with David Bowie wing-manning.

Here are the match-ups and the playlist. Vote by posting your score in the comments before midnight on Friday night.

“Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)

“Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)

About Janos Marton

Janos Marton is a lawyer, advocate and writer.
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10 Responses to Memorial Music Tournament: Semi-finals!

  1. Jim Rock says:

    8.5 – “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana)
    9.5 – “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)

    8 – “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits)
    9 – “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)

  2. Adam S says:

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King) 9 – 6

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie) 7.5 – 8

    If “Under Pressure” wins this tournament, do we legally need to award the title to Vanilla Ice?

    http://exclaim.ca/music/article/apparently_vanilla_ice_owns_the_rights_to_under_pressure

  3. sarena says:

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)
    7 vs 7.5
    this round would be way easier for me if the matchups were switched. these are both classically good songs but…

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)
    10 vs 9
    i didn’t want to get scolded by janos again, so i fully listened to UP all the way through again before i voted it down, and it turns out i really wanted to hear it today, and it sounded particularly crisp in my crappy earbuds, and i couldn’t go below a 9. still want r&j to win though.

  4. jacobpress says:

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) 8 vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King) 7

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) 7 vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie) 9

    Are we heading towards a rematch of the 512 song tournament from 2010?

  5. Lindsay says:

    This post is so well-written. It is definitely reminiscent of the tournaments that Guillermo ran with such passion!

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)
    6/8.5

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)
    10/9.8

  6. nataliebabij says:

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)
    ryan: 6.5 / 8.5
    natalie: 8 / 8.5

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)
    r: 6.5 / 6
    n: 7.5 / 6

  7. Janos Marton says:

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)
    J 8 : 7.5
    A 8 : 7

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)
    J. 8 : 9.5
    A 8 : 9

  8. “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana): 8.6
    “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King): 7.4

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits):: 10
    “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie: 10
    BRUTAL!

  9. grantrafter says:

    7.8, 9 (sbm by 1.2)
    8.7, 9 (up by .3)

  10. aiko says:

    Sorry for the late vote…things have been wild and scary out west. We’re okay but I for one and feeling pretty raw.

    “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Nirvana) vs. “Stand by Me” (Ben E. King)
    Aiko 7 to 10
    Ian 6 to 8
    Here in California it feels like the sky that we look upon is tumbling and falling, and the mountains are crumbling to the sea, so this song about support and hope no matter what is hitting home pretty hard.

    “Romeo and Juliet” (Dire Straits) vs. “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)
    Aiko 9.5 to 8.5 – really feeling both of these today.
    Ian 9 to 7

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