Apr 102019
 
cover me patreon

Hello loyal Cover Me reader!

Since 2007, we’ve published literally thousands of features and news posts about cover songs here. And as we’ve entered our second decade, Cover Me is more popular than its ever been. (Thank you so much for that, by the way.)

But there’s a catch: Having more readers doesn’t necessarily translate into making more money to pay the bills. Just the opposite. As any of you who follows the media business knows, the old display-ad model (those ad banners you see up top and on the side) doesn’t work well any more. To quote the song that gave us our name: “The times are tough now, just getting tougher.”

So we’re turning to you, our readers, to support the site directly via our brand-new Patreon! Continue reading »

Apr 232019
 
soak 1975

Last year, Pitchfork caused a small stir on music Twitter by naming the 1975’s sprawling pop hit “Love It If We Made It” their song of the year. One musician who agreed is Irish singer SOAK, who recently covered the song for the BBC.

“I think it’s the best song of this year,” she said on air. “They’re such an incredible band anyways, but this song stood out to me so much. It’s like one huge breath, the whole song, where they just voice their frustrations at the state of the modern world. It doesn’t give up.” Continue reading »

Apr 222019
 
cicada rhythm cover

Having originally been considered to be the lead-off single when Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water album was released in 1970 (eventually losing out to the title track), the catchy and upbeat “Cecilia” eventually peaked at number 4 on the U.S. charts. Interestingly enough, the song also resonated quite well across the pond as it peaked at number 5 on the U.K. charts whereas the title track “Bridge Over Troubled Water” never cracked the top 75 there.

Over the years, it has been pretty firmly established that the song is not paying tribute to a specific musical muse named Cecilia. It is more likely that the reference is to Saint Cecilia the patron saint of musicians in the Catholic church. At the time “Cecilia” was released, it was fairly well established that the personal relationship between Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel was in serious turmoil and this was the last S&G before the initial breakup. Continue reading »

Apr 192019
 

“Covering the Hits” looks at covers of a randomly-selected #1 hit from the past sixty-odd years.

Harry Chapin

No number one hit says “massive guilt trip” like Harry Chapin’s “Cat’s in the Cradle.” It’s become a shorthand reference to neglectful father-son parenting, featured in popular culture from Simpsons to Shrek the Third, and Stevie Wonder only wishes he prompted as many phone calls just to say “I love you.”

It started off as a poem by Sandy Chapin, Harry’s wife, inspired by the relationship between her first husband and his father. “He came home and I showed him the poem, and he sort of brushed it aside,” she said. But a year later Harry had become a father, and found himself living the life his wife had written about; he wrote music and a chorus, and David Geffen selected it to be a single. “You can’t do that; it’s ridiculous,” Sandy told him. “That song will only appeal to 45-year-old men, and they don’t buy records.” Harry himself wanted to re-record the song, saying “It’s terrible, just terrible. It’s much too fast a tempo.” Both of them were proved very wrong, as the song went to #1 in December 1974.

Continue reading »

Apr 162019
 
the raconteurs donovan cover

When Jack White and Brendan Benson’s band The Raconteurs announced their first album in 11 years, one track name immediately jumped out at us: 07. Hey Gyp (Dig The Slowness) (Donovan Cover). It’s not only that White is a master of the cover song (he’s appeared on our year-end lists more than anyone else I believe), but also…Donovan?? Definitely a surprising choice, especially for a man who’s literally performed with Bob Dylan. Maybe he watched Don’t Look Back recently. Continue reading »

Apr 162019
 
marissa nadler estranged

The video for Guns N’ Roses’ “Estranged” is often described as one of the most bloated of all time. Commonly cited in these critiques is the massive scene where Axl Rose jumps off an oil tanker and swims with the dolphins, like James Bond meets Flipper. “With a staggering $4,000,000 price tag and near ten-minute runtime, “Estranged” is an extravagant and thrillingly misguided monument to Axl Rose’s own persecution complex,” wrote Noisey. Continue reading »

Apr 152019
 
morrissey laura nyro cover

Laura Nyro was one of the unsung heroes of 1960s pop. Though the singer/songwriter released a number of albums, many of her most enduring songs were covers recorded by other artists such as Three Dog Night and Blood, Sweat & Tears. “She had a kaleidoscopic musical sensibility that fused elements of folk, soul, gospel and Broadway tradition into intensely introspective songs that transcended easy stylistic categorization,” The New York Times wrote when Nyro passed away in 1997. Continue reading »