Arlee Bird, from the blogs Tossing It Out, A Faraway View, Wrote by Rote, and A Few Words, left me this comment today:
I think you should start doing a Battle of the Bands post on the first and 15th of each month. With your musical range and knowledge I think you’d come up with some good match-ups.
Thank you, Arlee, and may I say, you asked for it.
On the first and fifteenth of each month, therefore, starting today (it being the September 1), I’ll find a song that’s been done a bunch of times by different artists (maybe even the same artist) present them all, and let you, the readers, choose which version of the song you like best. To vote, leave me a comment and share with me and everyone else why you made the choice you made. Okay? Okay!
Our first Battle of the Bands here concerns “You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me.” Written and produced by Smokey Robinson, it was originally released on the Tamla label (one of Motown’s labels) in November 1962. It reached #8 on Billboard’s Hot 100, and #1 on the Hot R&B Sides chart.
Here is the original version: