Sunday, July 15, 2012

Discovering the song after the cover

I mentioned last week that I've been listening to a lot of music lately. Some of that music has been songs that I knew previously only in their covered versions. I took the opportunity to get to know the original songs a little better.

For example: Dust in the Wind. I heard the Sarah Brightman version first:

and now I enjoy the original Kansas, too.

Go Your Own Way I heard first from The Cranberries:

but it's even more awesome from Fleetwood Mac themselves. SUCH A GOOD SONG. Turn it up loud.

It was a long time before I figured out that Landslide was not a Smashing Pumpkins original,

but another Fleetwood Mac gem.

Then there's Someone Like You, which I heard first from Kyle Landry:

and then on another cover:

and finally in the original. But actually, I prefer the covers.

What is it about a good cover? I think it's like getting to read your favorite book again, for the first time. A cover is everything you love, but different somehow. So you can handle a few more additional listens...or a LOT more additional listens, as the case may be.


Abu Halen said...

Oh, I had no idea the Cranberries had ever done Go Your Own Way. I'm really glad you love the original -- not to get music nerdy on you, but are you familiar with the story behind the song? It should only take a moment to look up, but it makes the song that much more electric. It must've been captivating to watch Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks do it live in the late-70s.

I almost always prefer originals to covers, but a few covers really shine. Chris Isaak does Only the Lonely (originally by Roy Orbison), and I know it's an unforgivable sin but I think his version outdoes Orbison's. I also prefer Alanis Morrisette's take on Crazy to Seal's original. Cake of course is a band masterful at covers, but the best cover ever is Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley (I don't think anyone would disagree with this). Leonard Cohen's original has like 10 verses, and Buckley axed a few, rewrote a few, and did such a great job that now people cover HIS cover. Sorry to get nerdy. I (heart) music.

Lisa Lou said...

I really like the Dixie Chicks cover of Landslide. Maybe (maybe) more than Fleetwood Mac.

Timothy Browning said...

Or what about discovering a song after the Weird Al version. That is a surprisingly large number for me.

Bridget said...

Abu Halen, definitely check out the Cranberries Go Your Own Way. In return, I will look up the story behind teh song.

I've heard so many versions of Hallelujah. I actually think I like them all. Kyle Landry (the pianist referenced above) does a great one. I think I like the Rufus Wainwright one the best.

Lisa, I've never heard that version, but I have heard a Glee cover that was apparently based on the DC cover. Which is funny when you think about it.

Tim, I'm sure Jeremy has some of those. I might have heard White and Nerdy before the original but that's about it.

Steven said...

Have you ever heard of Karmin?? They do excellent covers. Their most famous one is Look At Me Now. It's amazing. Also it has 69 million views on YouTube:


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