BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Poinciana” Again

I know, “Didn’t you just do ‘Poinciana’?” Well, yeah, I did, and ended up with a lopsided result. When I saw that The Four Freshmen were running away with it and some of the negative comments Vulfpeck received, I realized it was a terrible miscalculation on my part. So, I’m going to choose another challenger for The Four Freshmen and run the battle again. OK? OK!

First, here’s The Four Freshmen’s version. This is the 1953 single, so it’ll sound a little different from the version I used in the first battle.

Their challenger this time is Manhattan Transfer. They recorded this for their 1976 album Coming Out.

So, if you’d be so kind, listen to the two covers of the song, decide which you prefer, and vote for it in the comments below. If you’d like, I’d be interested to know why you chose that one, but it’s not important. Then, take a quick hop over to Stephen’s blog and vote in the battle I’m sure you’ll find there. He has a list of the other BotBsters in his right-hand column, and I’m sure they’d be just as happy if you’d stop at their blogs and vote in their battles, too. Remember, you don’t need to have a Battle of the Bands on your blog to vote. (You don’t even have to have a blog to vote.)

I’ll announce the winner of this battle next Wednesday, November 21, because Thursday is Thanksgiving and Friday is Black Friday and I’m sure you’ll all be busy celebrating the holiday. Be sure to get your vote to me before then.

The lines are now open. Good luck to The Four Freshmen and Manhattan Transfer!

11 thoughts on “BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Poinciana” Again

  1. Hey, JOHN! ~
    I love ‘Poinciana’ and I don’t think I’ve ever heard a rendition of it that I disliked.

    In this match-up, I’m going to give my vote to THE FOUR FRESHMEN. I dig their harmonizing. (Any group that influenced my Beach Boys is a group I can appreciate.)

    I listened to BOTH recordings TWICE, and at first, I thought I might go with the Manhattan Transfer (I’ve always liked their style). But upon a second listen, I felt there was a slight “cheese” factor there. Sometimes cheesy is good, but in this case, it kind of turned me off a bit. I still liked their cover, but not as much as the first time I heard it, and not as much as the FRESHMEN’s version.

    If you really zero in on the background music, the Manhattan Transfer almost sound like they’ve sampled (or at least borrowed) that funky little thing that Isaac Hayes put into the ‘Theme From SHAFT’. If you have the time and the inclination, go listen to ‘Shaft’ and then come back and listen to MT’s cover of ‘Poinciana’. See if you can hear that funky little thing I’m referring to. (I don’t know how to describe it, but it’s a rhythmic “thang” kind of buried in the background.)

    Incidentally, I LOVE the ‘Theme From SHAFT’. That dude was a bad muhtha– shut my mouth!

    ~ D-FensDogG at STMcC Presents ‘BATTLE OF THE BANDS’


  2. Ughhh….this is a song I dislike because of the flat chords they sing…not a fav. Add to that a quartet with no instruments and you might as well drip water on my face for an hour. I know, I am a bad girl. I shall give it to Manhattan Transfer because it was less grating than the other..not much less but a bit plus the instruments were good to have in it even though i felt like they were on some variety show with cheesy 70’s backdrops


  3. I gotta go with Manhattan Transfer this time, but truth be told – I really liked them both. Harmony, baby…love the harmonies.

    Happy Thanksgiving!


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