Archive for the ‘Reigning Pooh-Bah Maximus of Cover Tune’ Category

Tune du Jour: “Girl From the North Country” – Bob Dylan
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Eels vs. The Waterboys
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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You used to be so amused, At Broccoli Man and the carrot for a guitar he used ...

You used to be so amused, At Broccoli Man and the carrot for a guitar he used …

Girl From the North Country was released in 1963 on Bob Dylan’s second album The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. Dylan wrote the song after his first visit to England. During his stay, Dylan became friendly with an English folk singer by the name of Martin Carthy. Carthy introduced to Dylan a number of English traditional folk songs including his own arrangement of Scarborough Fair, a ballad that dates back to Medieval times. Dylan composed Girl From The North Country in the spirit and cadence of an old English folk song, going so far as to clip a line straight from Scarborough Fair: “For she was once a true love of mine”. A few years later Paul Simon would steal much more than a line, he pilfered Carthy’s whole arrangement! But that’s another story … and not a very pleasant one at that.

Girl From the North County is an infectious ballad of a man’s love who has moved on and away. Much speculation revolves around which of three former girlfriends inspired Dylan to pen the song. But in fact, it was written about me. Although only two at the time I had a major impact on Dylan, assuring and providing him with much needed confidence and direction. Embarrassed by his adoration of a two year-old, Bob chose to mask my identity by writing of a girl who moved abroad.

Though never a hit, Girl From the North Country has become one of Dylan’s more enduring songs. Dylan often performs it in concerts – including his 30th Anniversary Concert Extravaganza (or as Neil Young dubbed it, “Bobfest”) – and it has been recorded by over 50 musicians.

The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan

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Nashville Country: Bob Dylan & Johnny Cash

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In 1969 Dylan re-released Girl From the North Country on his album Nashville Skyline, this time singing the song as a duet with Johnny Cash. Bob had previously quit smoking and his voice sounded better than it had in years. But it’s anyone’s guess as to how much rehearsing the two did prior to recording. Exchanging verses, Bob kicks off the song with its first verse but when Johnny’s turn comes up he goes right into the third verse. Without missing a beat Bob follows with the second verse. And when they combine to sing there’s clearly confusion on where to go from there. It’s debatable whether the fourth verse gets sung at all as Bob and Johnny differ on a line or two, kind of melding the fourth and final verses together. But other than that it’s great. Actually, no kidding, it is great.

THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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Eels vs. The Waterboys
Eels:

The Waterboys:

The Waterboys hold the distinction of being CMI’s Reigning Exultant Virtuosic Performer of “Girl From the North Country”. Additionally, The Waterboys are recipients of CMI’s universally coveted title of Uni Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold yellow! The Waterboys‘ triumph in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competition is detailed below:

10/23/2013 – “Girl From the North Country” (Bob Dylan) – The Waterboys (71%) thump Eddie Vedder (29%)

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Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to three months from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Swingin’ Party” – The Replacements
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Bright Little Field vs. Lorde
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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Everybody's Dressin' Funny ... Cover Me Impressed!

Let Me Be Your Ruler, Ruler, You Can Eat My Broccoli, And Baby I’ll Rule, Let Me Live That Fantasy…

As the Academy Awards’ after-parties emphatically confirmed, the most discussed and heatedly debated topic in today’s entertainment industry has got to be, ‘When Will Lorde Debut on Cover Me Impressed?’. Well, my uber-connected friends, I’m afraid you’ll have to conjure up new fodder to ponder over cocktails. Today, Lorde takes the plunge, setting her sights on Bright Little Field’s reigning cover of The Replacements’ Swingin’ Party.

So what took so long for Lorde’s much anticipated entree to CMI? Well it would have come sooner but I got detained. (Sorry, forgot to take out the trash…ba-dum-bum!).

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The Original

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The Replacements:

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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Bright Little Field vs. Lorde
Bright Little Field:

Bright Little Field holds the distinction of being CMI’s Reigning Exultant Virtuosic Performer of “Swingin’ Party”. Additionally, Bright Little Field is a recipient of CMI’s universally coveted title of Bi Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold orange!

Bright Little Field’s triumphal exploits in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competitions are detailed below:

1/9/2014 – “Treatment Bound” (The Replacements) – Bright Little Field (100%) shellack Asylum Street Spankers (0%)

10/16/2013 – “Swingin’ Party” (The Replacements) – Bright Little Field (75%) wallop Popland (25%)

And, as if the aforementioned accolades are not enough, Bright Little Field also holds the distinction of being the only ukulele band to do a tribute album to The Replacements!!!

Lorde:

The young upstart’s sullen interpretation:

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Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to three months from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Forever Young” – Bob Dylan
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Neil Young & the Grateful Dead vs. Soweto Gospel Choir
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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"Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs." - Milton Friedbyrd

“Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs.” – Milton Friedbyrd

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Forever Young is one of Bob Dylan’s most beautiful songs. The song expresses Dylan’s hopes and dreams for his children as they progress through childhood. Forever Young is a frequently covered song with the majority of artists attempting in futility to maintain the spiritual poignancy that Dylan achieved.

Forever Young first appeared on Dylan’s album Planet Waves, which was released in 1974. Two versions of the song were included on the album, a slow and fast version. For what it’s worth, I think the slow version is so vastly superior to the fast one that I question why it was even included on the album; the fast version should have been an outtake, packed away for a future rarities release. Forever Young is just one example of the magic Bob Dylan and The Band routinely conjured up. It only solidifies the excellence and expertise of one of the more underrated bands of our time, The Band.

Forever Young is also noteworthy for one of those surreal moments when time just seems to awkwardly stand still. Of course I’m referring to Howard Cosell’s inane recitation of its lyrics when Muhammad Ali outlasted Leon Spinks to win the heavyweight title for an unprecedented third time.

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Planet Waves: Slow Version

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Bob Dylan and The Band:

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Planet Waves: Fast Version

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Bob Dylan and The Band:

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The Last Waltz: Simply Outstanding Live Version

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Bob Dylan and The Band:

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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Soweto Gospel Choir vs. Neil Young & the Grateful Dead
Soweto Gospel Choir:

Neil Young & the Grateful Dead:

Neil Young is a recipient of CMI’s universally coveted title of Bi Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold orange!

Young’s triumphal exploits in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competitions are detailed below:

10/18/2013 – “Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues” (Bob Dylan) – Neil Young with Booker T & The MGs (100%) throttle Robyn Hitchcock (00%)

9/27/2013 – “Imagine” (John Lennon) – Neil Young (84%) wallops David Bowie (16%)

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to three months from the day of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Imagine” – John Lennon
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Eddie Vedder vs. Neil Young
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
CoverMeImpressed.com     CoverMeImpressed.com     CoverMeImpressed.com
"Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs." - Milton Friedbyrd

“Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs.” – Milton Friedbyrd

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Gadzooks! It has been exactly one year today since my last post. Due to family flapdoodles too numerous to count, as well as general malaise, I apostatized from my righteous charge of disseminating Cover Tunes. But I’ve recently awakened and recommitted myself to spreading the felicity that is reprocessed tunage. So from this day forward – and for at least a week or two more – Cover Me Impressed will rise from the slag heap of long-defunct blogs! With its second-coming there will be some subtle changes. For one, CMI will no longer offer a daily CLASH of Cover Tunes. The plan is to publish three, maybe four, CLASHes per week. Also the voting period will be significantly increased from the one week time frame used in the past to 3 months. And lastly, from hereon out, any visitors that do not vote will be haunted over the next three nights (as the last stroke of twelve has ceased to vibrate, to be exact) by three spirits. And I’m here to tell ya, entertaining the Ghost of Cover Songs Yet To Come is by no means a joyous occasion. That is one tedious specter! And believe me, he will bore you to tears right through to the daylight hours with his insipid tales of self-important minutia!!

 

CMI’s inaugural blog and CLASH of Cover Tunes pitted two venerable old codgers – David Bowie and Neil Young – crooning their covers of John Lennon’s immortal masterpiece Imagine. Neil won that bout with 84% of the vote. For the sake of symmetry (and the fact that it is Doug Zaner’s favorite John Lennon song) we’ll reintroduce the blog with Neil defending his rendition of Imagine versus Eddie Vedder’s contribution.

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The Original

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Lennon:

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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Vedder vs. Young
Vedder:

Young:

Young holds the distinction of being CMI’s Reigning Exultant Virtuosic Performer of “Imagine“. Additionally, Young is a recipient of CMI’s universally coveted title of Bi Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold orange!

Young’s triumphal exploits in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competitions are detailed below:

10/18/2013 – “Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues” (Bob Dylan) – Neil Young with Booker T & The MGs (100%) throttle Robyn Hitchcock (00%)

9/27/2013 – “Imagine” (John Lennon) – Neil Young (84%) wallops David Bowie (16%)

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to three months from the day of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Give My Love to Rose” – Johnny Cash
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: On Guard vs. Bruce Springsteen
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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Broccoli For Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles ... Oh Yeah!

Broccoli For Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles … Oh Yeah!

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Vintage Cash. Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two recorded Give My Love to Rose in 1957 at the legendary Sun Records studio. Give My Love to Rose was also included on the 1968 live album At Folsom Prison, which featured June Carter, Carl Perkins and the Tennessee Three (my how they grow right before your eyes!) backing up the Man in Black. And Johnny also recorded a new version of Give My Love to Rose in 2002 for what was to be the last album released in his lifetime, American IV: The Man Comes Around (American V: A Hundred Highways was released posthumously in 2006).

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The Original: 1957

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Johnny Cash & The Tennessee Two:

Original … Well, not exactly. You’ve all heard the original Sun Studio version but this 1957 cut from the Tex Ritter television show might be a new experience.

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At Folsom Prison: 1968

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Johnny Cash, June Carter, Carl Perkins & The Tennessee Three:

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American IV: The Man Comes Around: 2002

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Johnny Cash:

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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On Guard vs. Bruce Springsteen
On Guard:

Bruce Springsteen:

Bruce Springsteen is a recipient of CMI’s universally coveted title of Uni Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold yellow.

Bruce Springsteen’s triumphal performance in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competition is detailed below:

12/9/2013 – “Love Of The Common People” (The Four Preps) – Bruce Springsteen & The Sessions Band (67%) repel Stiff Little Fingers (33%)

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to seven days from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Guns of Brixton” – The Clash
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: The Bandits vs. Nouvelle Vague
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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"Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs." - Milton Friedbyrd

“Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs.” – Milton Friedbyrd

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Guns of Brixton was released in 1979 on The Clash’s spectacular third album, London Calling. It was the first song recorded by The Clash that was written and composed by Paul Simonon.  It was also the band’s first song to feature Simonon as lead vocalist. The Guns of Brixton was initially not released as a single. A remastered version was subsequently released as a single in July 1990, which reached number 57 on the UK Singles Chart (better late then never I suppose).

Brilliant song! One of my favorites.

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The Original

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The Clash:

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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The Bandits vs. Nouvelle Vague
The Bandits:

The Bandits hold the distinction of being CMI’s Reigning Exultant Virtuosic Performer of “Guns of Brixton“. Additionally, The Bandits are recipients of CMI’s universally coveted title of Uni Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold yellow.

The Banditstriumphal performance in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competition is detailed below:

10/31/2013 – “Guns of Brixton” (The Clash) – The Bandits (86%) expunge Honeydippers (14%)

Nouvelle Vague:

Nouvelle Vague means “new wave” in English and “bossa nova” in Portuguese. The band was the brainchild of producers Marc Collin and Olivier Libaux, the concept being to remake classic new wave singles with a Brazilian pop twist. To add an unusual edge to the project, Collin and Libaux recruited French and Brazilian vocalists who were unfamiliar with the original versions of songs. The resulting songs were generally very interesting and, at times, excellent interpretations of the original material.

And will you look at this?!!? Nouvelle Vague has no reason to be intimidated as they too are recipients of CMI’s universally coveted title of Uni Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication.

Nouvelle Vague’s triumphal performance in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competition is detailed below:

12/2/2013 – “Making Plans for Nigel” (XTC) – Nouvelle Vague (100%) trounce Franzi (0%)

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to seven days from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Mack the Knife” – Bobby Darrin
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Nick Cave vs. Lyle Lovett
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
CoverMeImpressed.com     CoverMeImpressed.com     CoverMeImpressed.com

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"Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs." - Milton Friedbyrd

“Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs.” – Milton Friedbyrd

Moritat von Mackie Messer is a song written by Bertolt Brecht and composed by Kurt Weill for their play Die DreigroschenoperDie Dreigroschenoper premiered in Berlin in 1928. The opening song, Moritat von Mackie Messer, was originally sung by actor Kurt Gerron.

In 1954 Marc Blitzstein translated Die Dreigroschenoper into English  (i.e. The Threepenny Opera) and the play enjoyed a six-year run Off-Broadway. It is Blitzstein’s translation that became the basis for the popularized American song, Mack the Knife.

In 1954, Louis Armstrong was the first musician to score a hit with Mack the Knife. Of course, Bobby Darrin’s Mack the Knife, recorded in 1959, set an unparalleled standard of excellence for the song. Another popular version of Mack the Knife is Ella Fitzgerald’s 1960 live version. After the first verse poor Ella forgot the rest of the song. Yet Ella’s amazing improvisation thereafter earned her a Grammy for the performance.

Die Dreigroschenoper: Moritat von Mackie Messer

Kurt Gerron (1928):

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Mack the Knife

Louis Armstrong (1954):

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Bobby Darrin (1959):

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Ella Fitzgerald (1960):

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THE CLASH of Cover Songs

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Nick Cave vs. Lyle Lovett

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Nick Cave (1995):

Nick Cave holds the distinction of being CMI’s Reigning Exultant Virtuosic Performer of “Mack the Knife“. Additionally, Nick Cave is a recipient of CMI’s universally coveted title of Bi-Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in orange.

Nick Cave’s triumphal exploits in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competitions are detailed below:

11/9/2013 – “Moritat von Mackie Messer” (Bertolt Brecht & Kurt Weil) – Nick Cave (86%) shellacks The Psychedelic Furs (14%)

10/6/2013 – “Suzanne” (Leonard Cohen) – Nick Cave with Perla Batella & Julie Christenson (83%) quash Geoffrey Oryema (17%)

This is shortened version of Nick Cave’s rendition that I included solely for the Caveman’s stellar choreography:

Lyle Lovett (1994):

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to seven days from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.