Samson

And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death, that he told her all his heart, and said unto her, “There hath not come a rasor upon mine head, for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother’s womb.  If I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man.”

And when Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying, “Come up this once, for he hath shewed me all his heart.” Then the lords of the Philistines came up unto her, and brought money in their hand.

And she made him sleep upon her knees, and she called for a man, and she caused him to shave off the seven locks of his head, and she began to afflict him, and his strength went from him.  And she said, “The Philistines be upon thee, Samson.” And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, “I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he wist not that the Lord was departed from him.”

But the Philistines took him, and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with fetters of brass; and he did grind in the prison house.

–Judges 13, King James Edition

In order to keep this field from getting too crowded, I only posted a few of the more recent songs on the subject. I apologize for the omission of some of the powerhouses, most notably the Grateful Dead’s original version of “Samson and Delilah.” There’s also about a million songs about Delilah, some of which will find a home in a future Song-Off about biblical wives, so don’t worry, you’ll get your Tom Jones fix eventually.

Regina Spektor, “Samson”

The Dresden Dolls, “Delilah”

Shirley Manson, “Samson and Delilah”

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{democracy:47}

Last week, in one of the most hotly contested Song-Offs ever, the Beach Boys emerged from a crowded field, taking home a 25 percent plurality. Christopher Cross came in second with 22 percent, followed by Styx at 19 percent and the Pogues at 15 percent.  Next week, to celebrate the publication of the Ultimate Road Trip Mixtape (stay tuned for that, it’s going to be epic!), we’ll be looking at songs that represent the essential dietary staple of any long-distance trek: fast food.