Pharrell William’s “Happy” is one of those instantly catchy, ultimately forgettable pop songs that somehow find their into your head and get stuck there, even if you don’t listen to Top 40. The song is well written and produced, it has hooks and, as much as you might try and resist, it kind of makes you feel…happy.
Welcome to Cover Me Q&A, where we take your questions about cover songs and answer them to the best of our ability.
Here at Cover Me Q&A, we’ll be taking questions about cover songs and giving as many different answers as we can. This will give us a chance to hold forth on covers we might not otherwise get to talk about, to give Cover Me readers a chance to learn more about individual staffers’ tastes and writing styles, and to provide an opportunity for some back-and-forth, as we’ll be taking requests (learn how to do so at feature’s end).
Today’s question: What’s your favorite cover of your favorite Beatles song?
Coachella has taken over the music blogosphere for the past two weeks, so it was surprising when this gem popped up from a radio station on the opposite side of the country from the desert festival. Philadelphia’s WXPN has a free concert series appropriately titled “Free At Noon,” and Atlanta-rockers Black Lips teamed up with Boy George for a gritty rock rendition of T. Rex‘s glam-rock staple “Bang a Gong (Get it On).”
Norwegian DJ Todd Terje has worked his magic yet again on Robert Palmer‘s track “Johnny and Mary,” with a little help from the legendary Bryan Ferry. While Terje has been active in the electronic scene since 1999, he released his debut album It’s Album Time just this month. Ferry lends his signature vocals and piano playing to the track. Terje’s interpretation is slowed-down and laid-back, allowing the lyrical emotion to shine.
The Horn The Hunt, a dreamy pop duo hailing from Leeds, has released a cover of Neil Young‘s “Heart of Gold.” The cover was officially released as a B-side for the band’s single, Starless, at the end of March and has been making waves since.
Cover Classics takes a closer look at all-cover albums of the past, their genesis, and their legacy.
The Elektra label has a history of celebrating itself with various books and anthologies, but then, there’s a lot to celebrate. Started by a teenaged Jac Holzman in his dorm room in 1950, it grew into major label status while retaining an eclectic roster of musicians who were given the chance to spread their artistic wings, just as likely to reach pinnacles of cult fandom (Tim Buckley, Love) as pinnacles of worldwide success (the Doors, Queen). In 1990, Elektra celebrated its 40th anniversary by releasing Rubaiyat, a 4-LP/2-CD/2-cassette box set with a unique premise – the label’s current artists covering songs from the label’s prior artists. Rarely have such disparate musicians rubbed shoulders as they do on this release, whether on levels of dissimilarity (Tracy Chapman and Metallica – together again!) or familiarity (the Shaking Family was infinitesimally as well known as the Cure), but that was the point, and they all got together here for some fine and enlightening work.