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Posts Tagged ‘cover songs’

Saturday video break: Girls Just Want To Have Fun

In a world where music videos had plot lines, there was Cyndi Lauper’s 80s classic: Lauper went on to do several remakes and remixes of this song, which stands up pretty well 30 years later. While this is absolutely Lauper’s song, it was written by Robert Hazard five years before Lauper recorded it. She changed […]

Saturday video break: Gloria

Settle in, kids, this is going to be a long one. We start with the original version of this classic, performed by Them, a “Northern Irih rock band featuring Van Morrison”, who are not to be confused with Them!, a 1954 sci-fi classic featuring giant ants. Anyway, here’s Gloria by Them: I should interject at […]

Saturday video break: Girl From Ipanema

Easily the most famous bossa nova song ever, and possibly the most recognizable saxophone melody, here’s Stan Getz with Joao Gilberto and Astrud Gilberto doing their signature hit, “Girl From Ipanema”: I remember reading a “Peanuts” cartoon from a paperback collection when I was a kid in which Linus said he was the only student […]

Saturday video break: Georgia On My Mind

Legendary big band drummer Gene Krupa leads his troupe and an unnamed female vocalist in this classic: Of course, the version we all know is by Ray Charles: Some years ago I was visiting a school friend in Atlanta, and she took me to Stone Mountain to see the laser show. This number got a […]

Saturday video break: Friend Of The Devil

A vintage clip of a classic Grateful Dead song: That video is about three times as long as the studio version of the song, but hey, the Dead were a jam band. Anything less wouldn’t feel right. It’s also interesting that they slowed the tempo down for that performance. That’s the same approach Lyle Lovett […]

Saturday video break: For You

Some old school Springsteen, done acoustically by a more current version of The Boss: That’s from his debut album, Greetings From Asbury Park, New Jersey!. Did you know that three songs (that I know of and heard at least once on the radio) from that album were covered by Manfred Mann? You know about “Blinded […]

Saturday video break: Flashdance

Tear up your sweatshirt and put on your leggings, it’s time to go back to the 80s with Irene Cara: You know my motto: There’s no cheesy 80s hit song that Big Daddy can’t take to completely unexpected places: Someone really ought to put in an application for them to get a MacArthur genius grant.

Saturday video break: First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

You all know the Roberta Flack version: If you’re old enough to remember that song, you’re probably old enough to remember a TV ad or two selling a compilation of mellow hit songs that included this. (You may also remember it from the Clint Eastwood movie “Play Misty For Me”.) Aim that ad at a […]

Saturday video break: Fire and Rain

It’s a James Taylor classic: But have you ever said to yourself “You know, I’d like to hear that song with a bluesier voice and a horn section backing it”? Well, then Blood, Sweat & Tears is here for you: BS&T did a fair number of covers, the best known probably being the blues classic […]

Saturday video break: Eye Of The Tiger

It’s Survivor. Feel the awesomeness. You can’t top that – you can’t even come close to equaling it. There’s a reason Dave Bickler, the lead singer, went on to do those Real Men of Genius ads. The best you can do is something completely different. That means Big Daddy. I only wish Big Daddy made […]

Saturday video break: Existential Blues

I’m sure I have a few Dr. Demento fans in my reading audience. As such, I’m sure you’re familiar with Tom “T-Bone” Stankus and his stream of consciousness masterpiece: There are some better videos that show Stankus singing, with some bonus monologue thrown in, but they both have embedding disabled. These videos are here and […]

Saturday video break: Exactly Like You

Nobody does western swing these days like the Hot Club of Cowtown: I’ve been a fan of theirs for awhile, though I haven’t seen them in Houston recently. For a clear demonstration of their instrumental chops, see this blazing rendition of “Digga Digga Do”, check out their other videos, and visit their webpage. Come play […]

Saturday video break: Everybody Hurts

An REM classic, as done by the Meat Puppets: And by Amanda Palmer and Cormac Bride: I have some more versions of this, all in a similar style. They’re from a tribute to REM called “Drive XV”, which is still available as a free download from Stereogum. To save time, if you want to see […]

Saturday video break: End of the World

We’re all familiar with Skeeter Davis’ 1965 hit, right? OK, that may not be the song we think of when we hear the words “It’s the end of the world”. Let’s try the Pet Shop Boys, shall we? Still not the song you’re looking for? (Certainly not the official video, but I couldn’t find one.) […]

Saturday video break: The Elements

This is a bit of a rerun from last year, but it fits into this theme even though it’s technically not a cover but more of a remake and an update. Surely you know Tom Lehrer’s song “The Elements”: But seeing that video, you can also see that there have in fact been many more […]

Saturday video break: El Matador

Let’s get folky, shall we? When you think folk music, you’ll probably think about the Kingston Trio sooner or later. Of course, the Trio themselves didn’t consider themselves to be folkies, though they obviously had a huge effect on the popularity and viability of folk music. For a more modern performance, here’s Los Fabuloso Cadillacs: […]

Saturday video break: Dumbledore

And now for something a little different. We love Weird Al Yankovic here. You know that Weird Al does a lot of original songs in addition to his trademark parodies. Well, what do you get when someone parodies one of Weird Al’s originals? You get this, from Steve Goodie: The slightly disturbing video of the […]

Saturday video break: Downtown

A classic from Petula Clark: Remember how they used that song on Lost to introduce Desmond living in the hatch? Now here’s a typically offbeat cover of it by the B-52s: I can’t even think of a band that reminds me of the B-52s. Truly one of a kind. And to change things up again, […]

Saturday video break: Don’t Stop Believin’

You’re not too cool to sing along. Admit it. That was recorded in Houston, as you could tell from the pandering lyrics edit. The copyright says 2005, but that’s got to be at least 20 years off. My guess this was in the venue formerly known as the Summit, then the home of the Rockets, […]

Saturday video break: Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood

British Invasion time with Eric Burden and The Animals: I’m guessing a lot of people are familiar with the Elvis Costello version. Here’s a somewhat stripped down live recording of it: The version with which I am most familiar is the one I heard first, by Santa Esmerelda: The 70s, man. It’s like a whole […]

Saturday video break: Dimples

The great John Lee Hooker, y’all: And the Spencer Davis Group, featuring a very young but still completely recognizable Steve Winwood: The recording I have is by Winwood as a solo act, but I couldn’t find a video for that. Happy Dia de los Muertos, y’all.

Saturday video break: Desperado

A live performance by the Eagles during one of their reunion tours. Can someone explain to me why music writers seem to all hate these guys? I don’t get it. Anyway, the country roots of this song are easy to see, and it was featured on a collection of Eagles covers by country artists called […]

Saturday video break: Danny Boy

I have no idea who might have done this originally, so I nominate the King’s Singers for the canonical version: The main problem with this song is that it’s so easy to do an over the top schmaltzy version of it. If there’s one person who can put the feels into it without the schmaltz, […]

Saturday video break: Daniel

A little classic Elton John: Wilson Phillips did the honors on the “Two Rooms” tribute CD: That song wasn’t written for them, of course, but it sure sounds like it could have been.

Saturday video break: Dancing Queen

All hail ABBA: Did they know how to craft pop music or what? It’s not a surprise that the concept of a jukebox musical, where all the songs are taken from a single artist, has had its best success with “Mamma Mia” and its killer mix of ABBA tunes. My daughters have seen this movie […]

Saturday video break: Dancing In The Dark

You know this one: Gotta say, I’ve seen Springsteen in concert a couple of times, but I’ve never seen him dance like that, with or without Courtney Cox. Clarence Clemons, sure, but not The Boss. Ah, well, it was the 80s. You had to be there. And now for something a little different: Yeah, I’m […]

Saturday video break: Dance This Mess Around

The B-52’s, who are not easily imitated: And the Asylum Street Spankers, who are up to the challenge: I had the privilege of seeing the Spankers many times before they sadly broke up a couple of years ago. I had the privilege of seeing the B-52’s play at the Houston Zoo for their annual fundraiser […]

Saturday video break: Crocodile Rock

You know what you need? A video of Elton John on “The Muppet Show”, singing “Crocodile Rock” backed by Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem and a chorus of crocodiles, that’s what. The singing begins at about 1:46: How awesome was that? There are some celebrities that were just born to perform with the Muppets. […]

Saturday video break: Crazy Little Thing Called Love

A lovely little tune from Queen: Oh, Freddy. You left us way too soon. Now here’s a version you may remember from a Gap commercial, by Dwight Yoakum: A straight-up countrified version, a little up tempo, and it works quite well as a two-step, even if everyone in the video is line dancing.

Saturday video break: Cool For Cats

Is it really a cover when the lead singer of a band re-does one of that band’s songs as a solo artist? Here’s Squeeze, with Chris Difford at the wheel, doing “Cool For Cats”: Sometimes solo artists completely change the song of their former band when they record it on their own. Phil Collins’ “Behind […]

Saturday video break: Come Together

I think we’re all familiar with the original version of this one, so since I just have cover versions of it, let’s go straight to those. First, here’s Aerosmith: Steven Tyler was two years younger than I am right now when that was done. I should look so good without a shirt. On that note, […]

Saturday video break: Come Down In Time

Not one of Elton John’s biggest hits, but a lovely tune nonetheless: And a very good cover of it by Sting, from the “Two Rooms” tribute to Sir Elton and Bernie Taupin: Sting’s voice just works on that song, doesn’t it? That naturally led to the two of them performing it together: And there you […]

Saturday video break: Cold Shot

The one and only Stevie Ray Vaughan, ladies and gentlemen: I had no idea SRV even did MTV-style music videos. That one was amusing, if somewhat disturbing. I like how he has an endless supply of guitars at his fingertips. And speaking of fingertips, here’s Doctor John tickling the ivories for his cover of “Cold […]

Saturday video break: Centerfold

I’m sure you’re familiar with the original, by the J. Geils Band: J. Geils was one part quality classic rock band, one part novelty act. This was probably their biggest hit, and it seems somehow fitting that my favorite cover of it was done by a novelty band, Hayseed Dixie. Like cheesy lounge versions, corny […]