Sound of the City’s monthlong tournament to determine the quintessential New York City musician (since 1955, the year of the Village Voice‘s founding) has reached the bracketology stage, that moment where you, the viewer (and voter!) get to see just which musicians are up for consideration, and which of your favorites have the toughest opponents to get past. The 64 teams up for the honor are split into four divisions—Uptown, Queens, Downtown, and Brooklyn, named in honor of the way the N/R train, which is located right by the Voice offices, directs passengers. The top seeds are all formidable, too: John Coltrane is No. 1 uptown, the Ramones top the Queens contenders, Bob Dylan heads up downtown, and Jay-Z is the leader of the Brooklyn pack. But there are quite a few other worthy contenders who can upset any or all of these No. 1 seeds. (As is the case in the NCAA playoffs that this tournament is emulating, the participants aren’t strictly beholden to playing in their home-borough division—otherwise, where would we put entrants from Staten Island or the Bronx?)
The bracket is below (click to enlarge).
For my money, the craziest first-round matchup comes in Queens, where No. 6 seed Billy Joel takes on No. 11 seed Nicki Minaj. (Before you ask: Yes, we allowed in a few stragglers from Long Island. It’s a personal thing.) But there are lots of tight matchups all over the board! Tomorrow we’ll have the first set of matchups, in which SOTC writers will make the cases for their favorite contenders in the Uptown division. For now, get arguing!