Song of the Day #2,386: ‘Time’ – Ben Folds vs. The Beatles

Round Two of Montauk Madness comes to a close with a painful matchup for me, personally: The Beatles vs. Ben Folds.

The Beatles got here by unanimously toppling poor Shakira, while Folds bested The Smiths with a sizable 86% of the vote. Both of these acts have strong support among my readership. Continue reading

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Song of the Day #3,283: ‘She’s No Lady’ – Lyle Lovett vs. Bruce Springsteen

Arguments about artist selection, seeding and who should beat who aside, this Montauk Madness bracket system ultimately works, producing plenty of heavyweight matchups already.

Lyle Lovett vs. Bruce Springsteen is a doozy, pitting two of the best songwriters and lyricists I’ve ever heard against each other in just the second round.

Springsteen got here by dispatching John Mellencamp in a unanimous vote, while Lovett came close to his own sweep, besting Elliott Smith with 89%. Continue reading

Song of the Day #3,282: ‘I Know (Live)’ – Fiona Apple vs. Brad Paisley

Brad Paisley took out Lana Del Rey in Round One of Montauk Madness, and now he faces another enigmatic female singer-songwriter in Fiona Apple. Apple is both a better singer and a better songwriter than Del Rey (which is high praise for her, not a shot at Del Rey), but does she have the stuff to take out one of country music’s leading men?

Paisley picked up 75% of the vote in defeating Del Rey, while Apple defeated another female singer-songwriter, Dar Williams, with 80%. Continue reading

Song of the Day #3,281: ‘Lucinda’ – Randy Newman vs. The Rolling Stones

Here’s a nice meaty Round Two Montauk Madness matchup, pitting one of the greatest singer-songwriters against one of the greatest rock bands.

Randy Newman got here by defeating Adele with 90% of the vote in Round One, while The Stones took out Toad the Wet Sprocket in a unanimous vote. Pretty easy pickings for both of them.

Now it gets interesting. Continue reading

Song of the Day #3,280: ‘Higher Ground’ – Stevie Wonder vs. Michael Jackson

Fate has arranged the Montauk Madness bracket in a way that led to today’s spetacular Motown Showdown, pitting Stevie Wonder against Michael Jackson.

Wonder defeated Talking Heads in Round One, pulling in a sizable 71% of the vote. Michael Jackson fared even better, defeating Belle & Sebastian with 86%. Poor Belle & Sebastian… a top five band for me, but destined to ride the pine in the broader contest. Continue reading

Song of the Day #3,279: ‘Moving On and Getting Over’ – John Mayer vs. Elvis Costello

The next Montauk Madness Round Two battle is a bit of a laugher, particularly for readers of this blog. I’ll be surprised if John Mayer manages more than a single vote (my wife’s) against Elvis Costello.

Costello got here by taking out Carly Rae Jepsen, who did manage to pick up 33% of the vote. Mayer narrowly defeated Beck, 55% to 45%. Had Beck triumphed, the Beck/Costello matchup would have been interesting. Both have proved adept in multiple genres and are masters of the unexpected. Continue reading

Song of the Day #3,276: ‘For Emily, Wherever I May Find Her’ – Simon & Garfunkel vs. Prince

This might be the most incongruous matchup of Montauk Madness’ second round — the gentle acoustic folk rock of Simon & Garfunkel against the hyper-sexual experimental funk of Prince.

Simon & Garfunkel made it here by eliminating Rufus Wainwright rather easily, with 80% of the vote. Prince had an even simpler path, picking up 91% against Squeeze. I imagine they’ll both have a harder time in this round, though I don’t have a ready prediction as to who will win. Continue reading