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Bracketology: BNIT

What the hell am I wasting your time with now?

Call it the BNIT. In college basketball, after all the slots in the championship tournament have been filled, the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) takes the 32 next-best teams.

The bracketology NIT (I tried to think of a cooler name, but I’m tired) will be a small, short (five-week) tournament among the 48 highest-ranked songs that didn’t make the big dance.

What’s the point? Why bother?

1. There’s been a lot of discussion on the Bracketology: General Comments thread lately about songs which didn’t quite make the tournament. I want to recognize some of those songs, including some artists—the Chili Peppers, Muddy Waters, Elton John, B-52’s—who aren’t in the big tourney at all (still no Elvis Costello, though, dagnabbit). With 48 songs, we’ll extend the list of songs in competition to the entire AM Top 300 (plus a couple).

2. The big tournament is a lot of fun, and I’m really happy with how well it’s working…but let’s face it, it’s taking a looong time to get to any kind of payoff. I thought a short tournament would satisfy everyone’s desire for some instant (or at least faster) gratification.

3. With Henrik’s new rankings out now, it’s the perfect time to do it, since there are now fourteen new songs in the top 256, and it seems like they do deserve some recognition. I’m using the new rankings to seed the songs in the BNIT.

4. Finally, I just want it to be a fun little thing—whichever song ends up winning this tournament, it doesn’t prove much to say that that song is the True #257 or the Best Snub. It’s really just an excuse to play, and comment, a little more.

So, like I said: 48 songs in the first round (three weeks). The second round will be 12 songs (four brackets of THREE songs apiece, one week), then the final four (one week). The brackets in the BNIT work the same as in the big bracketology. Same deadlines, too, so ballots (if any) for this week’s songs are due Saturday, August 11.

(And let this be a lesson to you, jonmarck: be careful what you wish for, even in jest…)

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967)
24. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991)
25. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958)
48. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984)

8. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955)
17. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953)
32. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973)
41. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961)

9. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998)
16. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973)
33. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001)
40. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970)

4. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983)
21. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975)
28. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998)
45. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964)

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

So, let's see, which songs didn't make the BNIT...

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

These songs are just as good as the top 256 songs!

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Careful what I wish for? I don't get it...
Oh I get it. Because I want Bracketology every day. Well this is just as good!

BRACKET A (all fairly middling songs if you ask me)
1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) - Man I could go for some heroin right now. I want to feel just like Jesus' son.
48. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) - If not for War, The Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby or Rattle and Hum this would be U2's best anthem. Isn't that sad? There's nothing sadder than a B-list anthem. Still, it's a good song with THE ultimate hook.
24. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) - The most overrated Chili Peppers single. It forewarned California pop Chili Peppers, or as I refer to it, the first horseman of the apocalypse.
25. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) - Invented the power chord. Big whoop. Did anyone else know Link Wray was a Christian?

BRACKET B (yikes, bit of a crapfest here)
1. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) - THE Rasta battle hymn.
2. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) - George Thorogood owes this guy a career.
3. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) - Hank Williams is only Hank Williams when he's back-stabbed, heartbroken and lonely. He must be a pretty bitter guy.
4. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) - Even Orbison has better heartbreak ballads.

1. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) - The White Stripes took a romantic love song (witnessed by Joss Stone's cover) doubled the tempo, cranked the overdrive and wailed the crash cymbals. Yet somehow it's still romantic.
2. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) - This almost pigeon-holed Captain Fantastic as a sensitive, shoegazer song-writer. Then came the Donald Duck outfit...
3. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) - If I wrote this song (or could even perform it like Jack White in High Fidelity) I'd get laid every night, even if I didn't want to. It'd be like the beginning of A Hard Day's Night, "Leave me alone ladies, just give me some peace!" "Shoulda thought of that before you wrote (or performed like Jack White did in High Fidelity) Let's Get it On. You've given us no choice."
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) - This gets 4th place just because it's by a band called Stardust. Only Willie Nelson can use the name Stardust and not have it sound hopelessly gay. I swear, the music video ends with Stardust standing on a cloud. Give me a break.

1. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) - It's hard to put anything above a Dylan tune but this one just seems more important. If U2 were ever accused of insincerity all they have to do is point to the opening of War. It wails like only the Irish can.
2. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) - I think the only line I like in Dylan's comeback hit was "There was music in the cafes at night and revolution in the air". It's a decent tune but doesn't convince me that Dylan's returned half as much as something from Desire.
3. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) - Give it to Madge for keeping up to date. With Ray of Light she trades her screechy, bubblegum 80's dance pop for screechy, bubblegum 90's dance pop, and we're all the better for it. This smooth, airy track championed the electronica movement of the late-nineties, not-coincidentally the same time that the internet became ultra-popular. Thanks to Moby, the Chemical Brothers, Crystal Method, etc. it was like everyone was suddenly pretending they were an ion or something, and this was the best track to sustain the illusion.
4. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) - Think of it as Rebel Without a Cause for toddlers.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Yeah, I totally remember that part in High Fidelity! Jack White is crooning right along, and then Meg makes a surprise cameo by jumping out from behind the drumkit!


Re: Bracketology: BNIT

*Jack Black*


They should collaborate. Call it Black meets White.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Just being a brat. Couldn't pass up a chance to give a fellow Canuck a hard time. lol

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) – “Early morning, April 4” - easily one of the best moments in U2’s brilliant catalogue.
2. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) -
3. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) –
4. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958)

U2 is the definite #1 here. A magic 8-ball decided the rest.

1. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) – this is dirty, machismo blues at it’s finest. Makes me feel like I’m in a blues club; cigarette smoke, dirty skanks and all.
2. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) –
3. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961)
4. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953)

Again, a solid #1 (and #2 I suppose). Hank and Roy should go wallow in their misery over a few brewskies.

1. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) – sometimes I wonder how Jack White does it. He writes a song like this – an explosive, balls-out rocker that’s over before you even know it, and makes it seems so effortless. The guy can do no wrong in my book. (caught the show in Edmonton back in July – an amazing concert)
2. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) – it’s charming and sweet, without getting overly mushy. Not Reggie’s best, but certainly not bad by any stretch.
3. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) – there’s nothing to say about this one that hasn’t already been said thousands of times.
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) – This song is f%$#ing awful!

1. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) – Like I alluded to in my Bracketology comments on “One”, it wouldn’t be amiss to split U2’s career into pre-“One” and post-“One” categories. A quick look into the latter category, and a person will find only a handful of good songs scattered amongst way too much electronic experimentation and ambiguously-spiritual filler. The pre-“One” category, however, is where the gold is. “Sunday Bloody Sunday” is the perfect example of a band in their youth, not afraid to get their hands dirty with a political, rhythm-driven anthem. “How long must we sing this song?” For as long as people want to hear it Bono, and that could be a long damn time.
2. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) – wrote his best songs 11-12 years prior, but this one is still good.
3. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) – reeks of a last ditch effort at relevance before settling into soccermom-hood.
4. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) – vrrrroooom, vrrrrooom. (I couldn’t resist)

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

I was wondering if you had something like this up your sleeve!

I really like the way you're doing the Bracketology. I was thinking of an alternative to relate to College B-Ball where there are 32 conference champions (the winners of 32 rounds of voting) and the top 32 remaining songs earn "at-large" selections, but I'm a sucker for the underdog, and your method favors them more.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Thanks, Moonbeam. Yeah, I've had this in mind for a while now; I was really just waiting for Henrik's update, but then it took me some tinkering to decide on a good format for it and then plug in the math. My top priorities for the BNIT were to fill out the top 300 and to get it done in the shortest reasonable time.

I also wondered if there would be a way to simulate the conference tournaments--maybe grouping songs by style, or by artist, or by year--but frankly the thought of trying to do that right now makes my head explode. Actually, the first round of bracketology might be the best analogy to the conference tournaments--after all, that's about 300 teams vying for 64 bids--although of course, here, there are no at-large bids.

(Those of you who aren't into college basketball, please forgive the shop talk.)

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) - Easy winner here, but not a tune I spin on the way to work every morning.
2. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) - I never really like U2 all that much, but this one's kind of catchy I guess.
3. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) - ok.
4. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) - bores me.

1. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) - Hank is a god to me. This is the first Hank song I ever heard. So I guess I need to put it at No. 1.
2. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) - Cool reggae tune.
3. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) - prototypical 50's chicago blues.
4. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) - Please make K.D. LANG stop singing this song over and over and over...

1. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) - Wow. This is what pop music should be all about. Awesome. So clearly number one in this bracket and should have made the top 256!!!
2. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) - Like it.
3. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) - Nice pop hit.
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) - not my thing.

1. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) - I think this song is pure genius. Just the right amount over the top.
2. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) - I'm a big Dylan fan and could never figure out why I don't like this song more than I do....
3.U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) - If I have to listen to U2, let it be REALLY OLD U2.
4. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) - Can't think of a comment.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Guess I’d better go ahead and post a ballot.

Bracket A
1. U2, “PRIDE (IN THE NAME OF LOVE)”: This is still my favorite song of their pre-pseudoironic phase.
2. VELVET UNDERGROUND, “HEROIN”: Infamous, but I think it’s one of the lesser songs on VU & Nico.
3. LINK WRAY, “RUMBLE”: Just when I was afraid I was starting to reflexively credit 50s songs just because they were 50s songs, this comes along. Just OK.
4. RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, “UNDER THE BRIDGE”: You know how some movie comedians (Robin Williams, Jim Carrey) try to move into dramatic roles so they’ll be considred Serious Actors? You know how a lot of critics give them credit for trying, even though they really suck at it? That’s kind of what happened here…how this is ranked higher than “Give It Away” is beyond me.

Bracket B
1. HANK WILLIAMS, “YOUR CHEATIN’ HEART”: You ever read his biography? No, he wasn’t Mr. Happy (although I know of few songs more fun than “Move It On Over”). It’s country music, not the Age of Aquarius. Thank god.
2. MUDDY WATERS, “MANNISH BOY”: Funny you should say that, jonmarck…the first time I played this for my wife, she thought it WAS Thorogood. I was hoping to pick this song first, but luckily it will come up again next week (just because it’s called “Hoochie Coochie Man” there doesn’t mean it’s not the same song).
3. THE WAILERS, “GET UP, STAND UP”: Kind of inchoate for a call to arms. I’m giving the Rastafarians their love over in the big tournament this week.
4. ROY ORBISON, “CRYING”: Beautiful but unremarkable…I also can’t get k.d. lang’s duet w/ Roy on this song out of my head.

Bracket C
1. THE WHITE STRIPES, “FELL IN LOVE WITH A GIRL”: I decided to vote for this since I can’t vote for an actual Hives song…this is close enough. No joke: this was the last song that made me drive immediately to the record store.
2. MARVIN GAYE, “LET’S GET IT ON”: Not to beat a dead horse, but this song is everything “Whole Lotta Love” isn’t, which is why it’s a masterpiece.
3. ELTON JOHN, “YOUR SONG”: Sweet little song.
4. STARDUST, “MUSIC SOUNDS BETTER WITH YOU”: It took some doing for me to hunt this one down. It wasn’t worth it.

1. BOB DYLAN, “TANGLED UP IN BLUE”: Sentimental reasons here—this was my introduction to Bob. And the line that I can’t forget is “I felt a little uneasy / When she bent down to tie the laces / Of my shoe.” Great image.
2. MADONNA, “RAY OF LIGHT”: My favorite Madonna song. (I also ranked “Into the Groove” second in its bracket…just to be clear: I don’t really like her very much, but if someone records a great one, I’ll give credit.)
3. U2, “SUNDAY BLOODY SUNDAY”: Seeing Dylan and U2 together in this group reminds me that in Chronicles, Bob wrote something to the effect that Bono had the soul of an ancient Irish poet. Can’t decide whether that was blarney or not, but it seems to fit this one pretty well.
4. THE SHANGRI-LA’S, “LEADER OF THE PACK”: Actually at the back of this pack, by a considerable margin.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Bracket A
1)Velvet Underground - Heroin(The centrepiece off an amazing album - MUST be #1 here)
2)U2 - Pride(In The Name Of Love) - I'm a big fan of U2's early material - I always thought it was on 'War'
3)Red Hot Chilli Peppers - Under The Bridge:Their best song by a long stretch - can't help thinking of that appalling All Saints cover
4)Link Wray - Rumble:Well I'd never heard this before so when I listened to it I was pretty underwhelmed on first listen

Bracket B - the 'boring' bracket
1)Roy Orbison - Crying:His voice is incredible - great songwriter too - timeless
2)Hank Williams - Your Cheatin' Heart:Very simple,direct song - such a great songwriter - man,I love his voice - it could cut through wood
3)Muddy Waters - Mannish Boy:Never a huge fan of this sort of stuff but nevertheless at #3
4)The Wailers - Get Up,Stand Up:Yeah not bad,just OK though

Bracket C
1)Elton John - Your Song:This melody is timeless - it should be in the grammy hall of fame if it isn't already
2)Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On:Certainly one of his best - great song
3)White Stripes - Fell In Love With A Girl:Awesome song - I've been meaning to get that album. Joss Stone comes to mind here...
4)Stardust - Music Sounds Better With You:Average

Bracket D
1)Bob Dylan - Tangled Up In Blue:Beyond belief that this is not in the top 256 - Dylan's 2nd best song
2)Madonna - Ray Of Light:Maybe my first introduction to Madonna and what a sublime one.
3)U2 - Sunday Bloody Sunday:The beat of this sort of pisses me off sometimes - not one of my favourites of theirs
4)Shangri-Las - Leader Of The Pack:Cute,but unremarkable

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. Heroin - Another VU classic which should be in the big league.
2. Pride - High U2 energy.
3. Under the Bridge - Give it away is much better!
4. Rumble - Didn't knew this song. Maybe this was cool, once.

1. Get Up, Stand Up - For the Pastafarians or Rastafarians. Anyway: Praise.
2. Mannish Boy - Nice, dark, original.
3. Your Cheatin’ Heart - nice country, a bit boring in my opinion.
4. Crying - makes me cry

1. Fell in Love With a Girl - full of energy.
2. Let’s Get It On - grooovy
3. Your Song - Not my song.
4. Music Sounds Better With You - music sounds better without Stardust.

1. Tangled Up in Blue - Like Heroin, this should be in the top 256.
2. Ray of Light - The best Madonna song! Behind Bob though.
3. Sunday Bloody Sunday - U2? Yes, me too likes this song.
4. Leader of the Pack - nice for kids.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Sweet, more brackety goodness!

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) - 1? I was looking at this and realised.. yeah, 1. Best of all the rest.
48. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) - Sorry Bono, not even you can come close to VU's masterpiece.
24. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) - Great song, one of my favorite songs of the 90s.
25. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) - Wasn't very familiar with this, and it's not that great.

8. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) - Classic. Gotta love Samuel L. Jackson doing that "Turn off the downstairs light, before you go to bed at night" thing in The Long Kiss Goodnight.
32. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) - Easy #2, but nowhere close to Muddy.
41. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) - Decent, nothing special.
17. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) - Not a Hank Williams fan. Although I appreciate his talent, it's just too.. old I guess.

9. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) - Great song, Daft Punk never got to this level.
16. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) - Marvin does it again, and again, and again.
40. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) - Better than TWS.
33. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) - The White Stripes just bug me.

21. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) - Tangled up in blue not in the top 250.. what a shame.
4. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) - It should be forbidden to make such beautiful music about such a black day.
28. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) - Good song, but nowhere close to Bob or Bono.
45. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) - This song just annoys me.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967)
2. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991)
3. Link Wray, “Rumble” (195
4. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984)

"Heroin" is incredible beautiful, brilliantly executed. Possibly The Velvet Underground's finest song - high praise indeed.

"Under The Bridge" boasts poetic lyrics for a pack of sock-cocking funk-rockers, and a Helluva nice guitar part to go with it.

"Rumble" is a very nice, very dark, bit of rockin' there, and "Pride (In The Name Of Love)" does, well, sound a lot like all of U2's other '80s singles, but is still pretty bangin'.

1. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961)
2. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973)
3. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955)
4. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953)

"Crying" is pretty lovely, and "Get Up, Stand Up" is pretty funky (or at least: that stoned, inside-out sort of funky you get with good reggae). MB and YCH don't do much for me.

1. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001)
2. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973)
3. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970)
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (199

"Fell In Love With A Girl" is typically White Stripes awesome (gonna see them live in October, oh yeah!!) great lyrics ("the left side of my brain knows that your love is fleeting"), great riff, great stop-start fun and a Helluva vocal.

"Let's Get It On" is freakin' groovy infectious mojo, and "Your Song" is a pretty darn lovely little piano ballad.

"Music Sounds Better With You" is a piece of crap. Bleach.

1. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975)
2. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983)
3. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964)
4. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (199

"Tangled Up In Blue" is the perfect opening for Blood On The Tracks. Gorgeous stuff. "Sunday Bloody Sunday" is a potent anthem - one of early U2's finest. "Leader Of The Pack" boats some gorgeous pop flavours, some fun, cheesy spoken-word bits and - I'm sorry - still gets the neck-hairs standing over the whole grisly death bit. "Ray Of Light" is a good song, but Madonna is always likely to come #4 when pitted against the 'classics'.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

As a soccer fan, I prefer to think of this as the Bracketology UEFA Cup. And as a Tottenham fan, I know that many of these songs are just as great as those in the main tourney. (If you really wanted to be fancy, schleuse, you could drop the 2d placers from the main tourney into this tourney after round 1, but I'm not looking to make things more complicated.)

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) (More than a little pretentious. That's Lou Reed for you. But I'm a guy who likes changes in dynamics. The more straight ahead rock songs by VU are better, but this is good.)
2. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) (Very solid. Great use of choir. Love the build-up. Kiedis stays more or less in tune (a major achievement for him). Not a big RHCP fan, so surprised to find I'm putting this above U2.)
2. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) (Not their best. Less catchy melody than other U2 songs. But instrumental in the middle rocks. The Edge is much more of a God than Clapton, I tell you.)
4. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) (My second "I don't know this song" today. Yikes. I feel unqualified to even vote... but I will.)

1. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) (Sublime. That's all I've got to say.)
2. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) (Fine song. But not sublime.)
3. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) (My second 3rd place for Bob Marley today. This time I don't feel so bad. This is one of my least favorite of his songs. OK agitprop, a couple of nice turns of phrases in the verses, but too unsubtle musically.)
4. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) (Schwah: "Meh." Schwah's inner conscience: "Really, but this is muddy Waters. He's one of the all time..." Schwah: "I said meh. M-E-H. Meh.")

1. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) (I've had four transcendent live rock music experiences. 1) Pavement drunk off their asses in a tiny college performance space. Last night of the Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain tour. 2) The discovery that Beck is a performer as well as a musician. First NYC date after the release of Odelay. 3) 30th anniversary of the Return of the Mothership in Central Park. Bootsy, Fred Wesley, Bernie Worrell, Maceo were all there. 4) Radio City Music Hall to see the Strokes. Opening act Jack and Meg White blow the Strokes out of the water. It was no contest. That's how you fall in love with a band.)
2. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) (The precursor to one of my favorite albums, Daft Punk's Discovery.)
3. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) (This song is so much better than Sexual Healing. I don't know why everyone thinks otherwise. But I still prefer 60's Marvin and What's Goin' On Marvin to loverman Marvin.)
4. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) (When I was a kid, I sang this song live and forgot the simple, stupid words. Bad memories.)

1. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) (My wife is so in love with early-80's Bono. Despite that fact, this is a good song. U2 would go on to make many more great songs, but never again would they be this tight and wiry.)
2. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) (I am so in love with early-60's Mary Weiss. Alas, she's totally out of my league. Then again, so is my wife.)
3. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) (I've always felt this was a retread of old ground. It's good, but doesn't make me feel alive like many of his other songs.)
4. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) (Less in tune than Anothony Kiedis. This is one of her worst vocal performances ever, and that's saying something. (And I actually like Madonna.) Fine song otherwise.)

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Thanks for the soccer analogy, Schwah; I've always felt kind of bad that a lot of the NCAA terminology I was using was unfamiliar to many voters.

And, sad to say, I know very little about soccer. Me American...not know nothing about soccer except David Beckham's ankle hurt now. And he have freakish bony wife which I am supposed to think is good-lookin'. And you not supposed to head-butt someone in World Cup final.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Yeah, I'm American too, but somehow got hooked on European soccer. I thought with so many Brits around here (at least on the lists, if not on the charts), some people might get the analogy.

The Champions League is like the main Braketology... groups of four teams, seeded. However in that case the top two go through to the head to head competition, and the third place team drops down to the UEFA Cup (NIT equivalent), which already had its first round group stage.

And I'm totally with you on Posh Spice.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Le bracket surprise

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) ****: Miles ahead. Not my favorite VU&N song though. For me, it’s Venus in Furs..
2. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) ***: I can’t believe my ears : it’s good ! Surprise of the week. Excellent music for 1984. I love U2 in the 80s. Great lyrics.
3. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) *** : another classic of acoustic campfire sessions. Doesn’t move me like it used to
4. Link Wray, “Rumble” *** (1958) : Dark and full of guitar effects, more influential than really exciting

Le bracket de la mort.

1. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) **** : Well it’s not my favorite blues song, but man, a blues song in the brackets, I mean a real one.. With Muddy's huge vocals and Little Walter’s harp... I just can’t resist !This song was written as an answer to Bo Diddley’s I’m a man which was largely inspired by... Hoochie Coochie Man.
2. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973)****: Énorme, I would say in French. Marley beating Williams Sr and Orbison : where is my mission to defend roots material ? Well I’m defending roots reggae, cause I think it needs a little defense too
3. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) **** : Big O singing... For the fans, if you didn’t do it, buy A Black and White night, a live album with Elvis Costello, Bruce Springsteen and Tom Waits
4.. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) *** : I prefer him when he rocks a little more

Le bracket du caca

1. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) *** : Marvin at his most sensual.. but I don’t really dig that one. But anyway, it’s first (see why below)
2. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (199 *** : incredible that I put thet song second, but true : it’s the weakest bracket I’ve ever known. Catchy, avec l’accent français. For dancefloors only
3. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) *** : I don’t get it
4. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) *** : Listening to that song is like eating a jumbo sundae with lots of caramel. The first mouthfuls are good, but after that, too much sugar... (but the bastard can sing)

Le bracket facile

1. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) **** : Dylan at his best : the longer it lasts, the better it is : the anti-Elton John
2. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) *** : a little disappointed : Pride made more effect on me, despite what I thought
3. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) ** : no good
4. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (199 ** : what can I say ? I don’t like Madonna, one thing I know

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

not "le bracket de la merde?"

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

you can also say that
But I have a 3 year-old daughter and caca is more in her vocabulary (although I've heard her say merde a couple of times, i wonder where she got that word

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

Bracket A:

1. "Pride"
2. "Under The Bridge"
3. "Heroin"
4. "Rumble"

Bracket B:

1. "Get Up, Stand Up"
2. "Your Cheatin' Heart"
3. "Cryin'"
4. "Mannish Boy"

Bracket C:

1. "Fell In Love With A Girl"
2. "Let's Get It On"
3. "Your Song"
4. "Music Sounds Better With You"

Bracket D:

1. "Tangled Up In Blue"
2. "Sunday, Bloody Sunday"
3. Ray Of Light"
4. "Leader Of The Pack"

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) Great! Jason Pierce owes a career (and a great one at that!).
2. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) The riffing is so mean! First came to
my attention in the cool Robert Rodriguez rockabilly move “Roadracers”,
where it’s used to great effect.
3. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) The guitar intro is
great. The choir at the end comes close to ruining the whole thing.
4. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) Good pop song.

1. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) I’m going by the 1977 version on
this one. One of my favourite vocal tracks of all time.
2. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) Not very familiar with Hank Williams. Listening to this now, and it sounds great.
3. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) Great ballad.
4. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) Nice and simple.

1. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) Marvin wants to get down to business. Absolute brilliance.
2. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) Not rated highly around
here it seems. One of the best club-pop tracks in the latter 90s.
3. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) Cool stripped down rock.
4. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) Not my thing.

1. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) One of the first Dylan songs I got into.
2. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) My favourite U2 song. According to
Alan Partridge it’s about waking up with a hangover.
3. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) Good song.
4. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) Fun.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

BRACKET A - A strong bracket
1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) Awesome
24. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) Their best song
48. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) One of their best
25. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) Pulp Fiction

41. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) This song is epic like an Ennio Moricone song
8. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) I'm pretty sure I've never heard this version, but it doesn't matter since I've heard a billion covers
32. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) Bob Marley wrote one song melody and a bunch of different lyrics for different songs (except for "Could you be loved" which is awesome in all aspects)
17. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) Eh.

9. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) Oh, I had heard it, but I didn't realize I had heard it until Monday and since I listened to it on Monday it's been stuck in my head, and I'm not really complaining about that. I think that says something about the awesomeness of this song.
33. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) Maybe it's so awesome because we all think we can do it like this, but we can't.
40. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) A little bit cheezy, but it's one of Elton's best.
16. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) Really cheese. I always hated that this album wasn't really that good for getting it on. Ironically enough I think Here, My Dear was the best for getting it on if you ignored the lyrics.

21. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) Oh Bob, I'm glad you have feelings too.
28. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) A great dance track. This was the point that I actually started likeing Madonna.
4. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) I know most people love this song, but then most people just love U2 more than I.
45. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) Bleh.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) – Wow. This bracket is better than most of the ones in the main tournament, with four songs I absolutely love. But Lou’s paean to oblivion, with extraordinarily blatant viola abuse by Mr. Cale, tops them all.
2. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) – Grabs you by the throat from the first second and never lets up. Might be my favorite single of the 80s.
3. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) – All you need to know is that some radio stations banned this song for being too violent. It’s an -instrumental-. ‘Nuff said. To paraphrase a line from a David Mamet movie, Link Wray’s so cool that when sheep go to bed they count HIM.
4. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) – I wish I didn’t have to put this last. It changed their entire career, and (as far as I’m concerned) with good reason.

1. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) – Four classics here, but none of which I feel particular fondness for. This is one of Marley’s very best (and angriest), and I feel comfortable giving it the top slot.
2. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) – I know it better via the ferocious remake on HARD AGAIN than in its original recording, but it’s blues (ain’t-that-a-man division) incarnate.
3. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) – The Big O at his slow-build-to-a-crescendo best.
4. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) – I need to get to know Hank better. I just picked up a used copy of 40 GREATEST HITS, so that will help.

1. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) – Two minutes of modern garage heaven. Not their best song, but it was a fantastic calling card. Great Michel Gondry video, too.
2. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) – Is it blasphemous to say I like this better than “Let’s Get It On”? It may not be either rock or soul, but it’s just a great song, plain and simple.
3. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) – Almost a cliché by now, but it became one because it so perfectly is what it is, and nothing more.
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) - #4 by default; I’ve never heard it.

1. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) – One of Dylan’s very best, the brilliant lead track on a masterful album. Full of elliptical and unforgettable imagery about everything that can go right and wrong between two people.
2. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) – A very close race here. If there had been any doubt that this band was here to stay, it was erased with that first arresting snare drum crack, and the rest of the song maintains that level of intensity. The best track Steve Lillywhite ever produced.
3. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) – The ultimate girl-group death song, endlessly parodied even though it’s practically self-parody in its own right. LOOKOUTLOOKOUTLOOKOUTLOOKOUT!!!
4. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) – Just when you thought she might be out of surprises, she went and dropped this dazzling track (and album). But it’s still #4 here.

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” - "Early Morning, April 4????????????????" Well, Martin Luther King was assasinated in the early evening, but despite the historical inaccuracy, this is still a lovely and moving song.
2. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” - Perhaps the closest a song has ever come to making me feel like I've taken drugs. Not sure if that's good or bad.
3. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” - A little overwrought, but a good Peppers tune.
4. Link Wray, “Rumble” - Never heard of it, not going to start now.

1. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” - Fine protest song from the king of reggae
2. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” - Fine country standard
3. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” - Better than a womanish boy.
4. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) - Pretty ballad, but a bit too warbly for my taste.

1. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” - The reason I'm even voting in the BNIT. A great punk love song. Thank God for the White Stripes this decade. P.S. The lego video kicks ass, too.
2. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” - (Using Austin Powers accent) Yeah, Baby!
3. Elton John, “Your Song” - A lovely ballad, but up against tough competition.
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” - Why is this on the list?

1. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” - This song is shear emotional power, and given it's subject matter, it better be.
2. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” - Took him five years to get into gear in the '70s, but he finally did. I do prefer "Shelter From the Storm" on this album, though.
3. Madonna, “Ray of Light” - "And I feel" ... like this is perhaps Madonna's best song ever. Tough to beat top two, though.
4. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” - Why do gimmicky songs like this and "Yakety Yack" rate so high?

Re: Bracketology: BNIT


Pride (in the name of love) - Absolute number one, one of the best songs from U2. Both live and studio version are great
Under the bridge - Good ballad by the peppers.
Rumble - Must have been great at the time
Heroin - I think I don't understand this song, a skipper on the banana album


Get up, stand up - And again a number one for Bob Marley. Not his best but by far better than the rest in this bracket
Crying - Good ballad
Mannish boy - Great blues song. Nice to hear so now and then but not too much
Your cheatin' heart - Maybe a little bit dated


Let's get it on - One of his best songs. Deserves a higher ranking.
Your song - A quite simple song indeed. But simple can also be beautiful
Fell in love with a girl - I just don't get the white stripes
Music sounds better with you - Not good


Sunday bloody sunday - Absolute number one, one of the best songs from U2. Both live and studio version are great
Tangled up in blue - Not his best song but still better than madonna's best
Ray of light - Never write her off
Leader of the pack - Also not good

Re: Bracketology: BNIT

1. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Under the Bridge” (1991) - I've lost some of my interest in RHCP over the years, but not in this song.
2. U2, “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (1984) - It can not be more U2 than this.
3. Link Wray, “Rumble” (1958) - Ultimate Tarantino song.
4. The Velvet Underground, “Heroin” (1967) - Can music get more intense? Still goes as #4 here though.

1. The Wailers, “Get Up, Stand Up” (1973) - If only for "You can fool some people sometimes, but you can't fool all the people all the time".
2. Muddy Waters, “Mannish Boy” (1955) - Probably the coolest blues song ever. This bracket is so tough!
3. Roy Orbison, “Crying” (1961) - Good, but not one of his very best.
4. Hank Williams, “Your Cheatin’ Heart” (1953) - Again, not one of the artist's best IMO, but Hank was always good.

1. Marvin Gaye, “Let’s Get It On” (1973) - I think the acclaim for this song is bigger than the AM position shows. It would have appeared in many more lists if it wasn't for "What's Going On" always being the critics' #1 pick. This IS just as good.
2. The White Stripes, “Fell in Love With a Girl” (2001) - Compact disc!
3. Elton John, “Your Song” (1970) - Elton's beautiful signature tune somehow only ends up at #3.
4. Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998) - Great dance beat, but a great song? All the music-moving-in-and-out gets tedious after a while.

1. Madonna, “Ray of Light” (1998) - Now this is a great dance song!
2. U2, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” (1983) - Surprisingly good reviews for U2 so far. I concur.
3. Bob Dylan, “Tangled Up in Blue” (1975) - Really good song, but I have more love for #1 & #2.
4. The Shangri-La’s, “Leader of the Pack” (1964) - A standout girl group song, but it has to be #4 here.