Cheap Trick’s “I Want You to Want Me” has traveled a varied path, covered by Letters to Cleo, Dwight Yoakam, and Chris Isaak, to name a few notables. This stripped-down version, however, is a far cry from the many incarnations of the song – starting with the fact that it is sung by a clown.
Throughout its cover evolution, “I Want You to Want Me” has stayed decidedly upbeat, with full bands, peppy harmonies, and an overall pop feel. Consider for a moment, however, the lyrics to the song:
Feelin’ all alone without a friend
You know you feel like dyin’
Oh, didn’t I, didn’t I, didn’t I
See you cryin’
Which begs the question: why is this an upbeat pop song in the first place? It sounds more like a lover’s lament, which is exactly what Puddles Pity Party finds in his version. The tempo is slowed down to a rate where you can really let those lyrics sink into your bones. His voice oozes over the notes with a clear, affecting tone. A guitar is the sole accompaniment.