Powerhouse singer and songwriter Neko Case turns the big Five-Oh today. Case has never been an artist to deny or put a spin on who she is, so well-intentioned remarks like “50 is the new 30” might not fly. We’ll keep it simple with a loving “Happy Birthday, Neko!” Continue reading »
The Squidbillies, an animated show on Adult Swim about mud squids living in Appalachia, has a special twist for its fans this season. The eighth season, which started on September 21, featured the show’s traditional theme song covered by Neko Case. Case is just the first of several musicians – including Todd Rundgren, King Khan and the Shrines, Centro-Matic, Dwight Yoakam, and Milk Carton Kids – that will be covering the theme for this season.Continue reading »
They Say It’s Your Birthday celebrates an artist’s special day with other people singing his or her songs. Let others do the work for a while. Happy birthday!
Active in various music scenes since 1994, Neko Case has built herself an impressively deep resume. That’s based primarily on her position as super-pop group The New Pornographers’ co-lead singer, as well as her solo alt-country/folk career. Meanwhile, her non-musical projects command almost as much attention, whether it’s her considerable charity work for organizations like 826 National or her guest spots on Adult Swim shows like Aqua Teen Hunger Force or the truly bizarre Cheyenne Cinnamon and the Fantabulous Unicorn of Sugar Town Candy Fudge.Continue reading »
If you’re at a karaoke bar and you see a guy and a girl go up together, brace yourself. Odds are two to one they’re going to sing “Islands in the Stream,” the treacly 1983 duet by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton. If anyone can bring some street cred to the song that inspired “Ghetto Superstar,” though, it’s My Morning Jacket.Continue reading »
America seems to be pretty much over the whole vampire craze, but True Blood returns Sunday night anyway and we’re glad it does. Why? Because the soundtrack features a cover of the Zombies’ “She’s Not There” from Nick Cave and Neko Case! If this is the show that recently rejected Delta Spirit’s cover of the same song, we see why they did so.
KCRW just premiered the track and you can listen over there. It’s more Cave than Case, dark and foreboding, menace seen through a slightly more polished lens. The tension keeps it interesting, though there may be one too many keyboard solos here.
Listen to Nick Cave and Neko Case’s “She’s Not There” over at KCRW.Update: Listen to the official stream below.
Nick Cave and Neko Case – She’s Not There (The Zombies cover)
There is no Queen without Freddie Mercury. On a fundamental level, we all agree that is true. But, if you want to be literal about it, there is Queen without Freddie Mercury. Thirty years after Freddie’s death, the show must go on, and so the band still exists. Adam Lambert now sings Freddie’s parts on tour, just as Paul Rodgers did before him. The Bohemian Rhapsody movie included some new vocal recordings – not by star Rami Malek, but by Canadian singer Marc Martel. And then of course there are the many singers who fronted Queen at the 1992 Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert, broadcast to an audience of up to one billion people. (If you haven’t watched George Michael singing “Somebody to Love” or Annie Lennox joining David Bowie for “Under Pressure,” go do that now, then come back.)
Suffice to say, millions if not billions of people have heard Queen songs sung by singers other than Freddie Mercury. But none of those we just mentioned are covers, strictly speaking, since they feature most or all of the band’s three surviving members. Bassist John Deacon has since departed – and his joining Queen fifty years ago this month, solidifying the lineup, marks the anniversary we’re pegging this post to – but guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor have kept the Queen name alive. No doubt, when touring becomes a thing again, Queen will be back on the road once again.
The forty actual covers on our list do not feature any members of Queen. As such, they’re free to roam much further afield than Adam Lambert or George Michael, turning the band’s hits and the occasional deep cut into genres from polka to punk, a cappella to acoustic instrumental. Queen dabbled in so many different genres during their time – I mean, “Bohemian Rhapsody” alone! – I think they’d appreciate how malleable their songs can be. Even when they’re not the ones performing their songs, Queen will rock you.