As the Battle of the Champions continues it's close fight we also return to regular service, and with it a return to an Arch Duke request. Today's request from Dukey is the Bob Dylan classic "Wagon Wheel."

In our last regular round we took on Bonnie Tyler's "Holding Out for a Hero," a classic originally written for the movie Footloose, and, well, it was never even close. German Acapella metal group took an early lead and never looked back, taking a full 61% of the votes. The nearest competitor was Emerald Sun with only two votes. The battle for the worst was similarly one-sided, as Joss Stone took an early lead and held it to the finish, ultimately beating the late charge of Ella Mae Bowen by two votes. Surprisingly the two covers that were written for Shrek 2 (Jennifer Saunders and Frou Frou) were never real contenders for worst, despite being associated with Shrek 2.

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"Wagon Wheel" may have one of the most interesting origin stories we've encountered yet, and is yet another song that blurs the line between "original" and "cover" (thanks for that, Arch Duke). The original song by Bob Dylan is actually incomplete and was never officially released. During a jam session for the Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid soundtrack album Bob picked up a guitar and performed a track that was melody, chorus, and a couple incomprehensible mumbled verses (this is Bob Dylan after all). And officially that was that. It wasn't so much a song as it was a sketch, a little something Bob did in the studio for the hell of it, never meant to see the light of day. And it never would have if not for a bootleg release of the session.

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Nearly two decades later a high school kid named Chris Fuqua would come across the bootleg on a trip to London, purchase it, bring it back to the states, and hand it off to his friend Ketch Secor. The Dylan-obsessed Secor listened to it endlessly, and, when he formed the band Old Crow Medicine Show he wrote some verses and began performing it at live concerts. Finally, after a decade Secor looked into gaining the copyright so he could release a studio version. During the search he found out that Bob Dylan attributed the phrase "rock me, mama" to Arthur "Big Boy" Crudup, who in turn picked it up from a Big Bill Broonzy recording. Effectively Wagon Wheel was a song that took 85 years to finally be completed. Since much of the song came from Dylan's recording, but the verses were the work of Secor, the two signed a co-writing agreement and shared the copyright to the finally finished song in a 50-50 split. And all of this is why the song was the hardest yet for me to decide what was the original and what was the cover. Damn you, Arch Duke.

Old Crow Medicine Show - (2004)

Against Me! - (2005)

Jeremy McComb - (2007)

Mumford and Sons - (2010)

Nathan Carter - (2012)

Chad Brownlee - (2012)

Darius Rucker - (2013)

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LEST YE FORGET! If you want to check back on the results of previous rounds, or see what covers are coming in future rounds, there is now a Google Drive spreadsheet with past rounds and the upcoming battle schedule.

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AND THE BONUS GAME! IDENTIFY THE FOUR ARTISTS IN THE "FIGHT" IMAGE AT THE TOP OF THE PAGE! BONUS POINTS IF YOU CAN DO IT WITHOUT THE GOOGLES!